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91
Today's Puzzles / Tue., 10/28 Grabowski & Venzke
« Last post by magus on October 28, 2014, 09:30:13 AM »
THEME:   last word of a phrase can describe a MARK
   
GOOD ONES:     
"Remember what I said" {& theme}   MARK MY WORDS ["Mark me, mark me, O mark me" came to mind]   
Completed the course?   ATE ["Needs no question mark from hell tell us this!" --- probably from the same act in Hamlet]   
   
BTW:   
Chapter in a geology text, maybe   ERA [more likely eon in geology; era in history]   
   
Wonder what per cent of bingo players are on BEANO pills?    :)
   
   
RATING:    ;D
Three grins = Loved it; Two grins = Enjoyed it; One grin = A bit bland for my taste; One teardrop = Not much fun   
92
Today's Puzzles / Re: Mon., 10/27 Jeffrey Wechsler
« Last post by LARadioRewind on October 27, 2014, 05:06:25 PM »
I always admire anyone who can include several 15-letter phrases in a puzzle. I remember one crossword that contained nine 15-letter phrases: three at the top, three in the center and three at the bottom. I can never understand how anyone can find so many 15-letter phrases that can be stacked in such a way as to allow for 15 intersecting vertical words.

Such puzzles, unfortunately, tend to include a higher number of overused Crosswordese words. Today's included ACED, ADD, ATM, ECRU, EDAM, ETA, ETES, ICE, IRS, LCD, PAL, REF, SEE and SST. Oh yeah---SST. This is the sixth L.A. Times puzzle this month to include SST. This time the clue was "Former Air France jet, briefly."
93
General Discussion / Re: Feeling on two words?
« Last post by mmcbs on October 27, 2014, 04:20:30 PM »
I'd avoid PEAKY. It doesn't seem to be in general use in the sense of sickly, it's contrived in the sense of having a peak. Peaky Blinders was a gang in England that they've recently made a TV show about. That's probably pretty obscure, too.

ELEA probably OK - many terms from classical literature, ancient history,  and mythology are fair game.
94
General Discussion / Feeling on two words?
« Last post by acpracht on October 27, 2014, 02:28:26 PM »
Trying to get thoughts about two words in a partial fill:

Elea - Home of the philosopher Zeno.
Peaky - Looking sick or under the weather.

Many examples of Elea showing up, even though I think that's an obscure real-life reference.
Only one example of "Peaky" in reference to a pointed roof, but I think that in terms of sickness it should be well-known.

Thanks,
-Adam
95
Today's Puzzles / Mon., 10/27 Jeffrey Wechsler
« Last post by magus on October 27, 2014, 08:58:10 AM »
THEME:   first words of four phrases begin with ONE through FOUR, respectively
   
BTW:   
ETES is not a word in our language   
   
RATING: :'(   
Three grins = Loved it; Two grins = Enjoyed it; One grin = A bit bland for my taste; One teardrop = Not much fun   
96
General Discussion / Re: NYT: Wait for reply before sending another?
« Last post by KXL on October 26, 2014, 07:36:04 PM »
Good point.  Thanks.
97
Today's Puzzles / Sun., 10/26 Melanie Miller
« Last post by magus on October 26, 2014, 09:29:50 AM »
THEME:   intrusive GO makes humorous phrases
   
GOOD ONES:    
Fruit found in the back of the fridge?   DIRTY OLD MANGO   
Class on an African river?   CONGO COURSE [concourse]   
Google an African nation?   LOOK UP TOGO   
Old MacDonald's signature dance?   FARMER'S TANGO   
Place for worms?   CAN ["can of worms"]   
Plate cleaners, at times   UMPS   
Drink from a bag   TEA   
Last letter?   DEAR JOHN [which like 39-Down is a "Terminal communication"]   
   
   
RATING:    ;D ;D ;D
Three grins = Loved it; Two grins = Enjoyed it; One grin = A bit bland for my taste; One teardrop = Not much fun   
98
General Discussion / Re: Quick feedback on a theme?
« Last post by mmcbs on October 26, 2014, 09:19:13 AM »
Usually the themers are the longest entries (except sometimes if they're all across entries, there might be down entries that are the same or longer).

The hallmark of letter adds/switches is that the original phrase is a common, well understood saying or phrase, thus in your example #1 & 3 are OK, but #2 & 4 are not (also "frolick" is not a real word, the k is only used in frolicked and frolicking).

The other facet is that the converted phrase is clever and/or amusing, as a punch line of a joke would be. Some are funny in their own right (Prince of Waddles is one I've used), others need help from the clue. So, try cluing these and showing them to a friend to see if he/she thinks they're funny.
99
General Discussion / Re: NYT: Wait for reply before sending another?
« Last post by mmcbs on October 26, 2014, 09:01:10 AM »
You can send other puzzles while waiting, unless the publisher's instructions indicate otherwise. The advantage of waiting is that you may benefit from feedback you receive, thus avoiding repeating the same mistakes you made on earlier submissions. But some publishers take several weeks or even months to respond.
100
General Discussion / looking for advice on "going pro"
« Last post by earlfrumper on October 26, 2014, 12:39:25 AM »
Hi all,

Looking for some advice on how to make crossword creation more of a full time thing. If not going "pro", maybe minor league. Currently I produce a paid weekly puzzle for a local newspaper, and I've got a pending puzzle in the LA Times. In general, I think that I can reliably produce decent puzzles.

What I'd like to know about is the process of proposing and creating puzzles as part of a collection (themed or otherwise) for a publishing company or puzzle website. Would I approach, say, Puzzlewright, directly, with a theme idea, or do they reach out to established constructors first?

I welcome any messages on this topic.

Best,
Alex
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