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Author Topic: Three-letter words  (Read 5616 times)

margoc19

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Three-letter words
« on: September 11, 2019, 08:54:47 AM »
Is there a limit to how many three letter words can be in a 15x15 grid?

mmcbs

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2019, 10:37:30 AM »
Simon & Schuster has a hard and fast rule - no more than 12. For othrers, the fewer the better, and you'll probably get some pushback it if you go over 20.
Mark McClain
Salem, Virginia, USA
https://crosswordsbymark.wordpress.com/

johnmartz

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2019, 01:06:48 PM »
I was wondering this myself recently, and did a quick survey of the last few NYT puzzles. The September 4 puzzle, a Wednesday, has a whopping 28 3-letter words in it. That week's Monday puzzle has 21, and the Tuesday has 24. The Thursday and Friday both have 11, and Saturday has 17.

mmcbs

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2019, 01:23:31 PM »
That puzzle with 28 3's got dinged by the reviewer for that, but it was an oh-so-cute novelty theme, and obviously the fill didn't much matter. When you look at that puzzle, you find ONO, OTT, RTE, CEO, ALT, EEL, ADA, MTA, ORK - pretty crappy fill IMO. So if you come up with a theme that's as clever as that, no one's going to worry about how many three letter words you have (or in this case what they are).

Sometimes the theme forces a high 3-letter word count, and that's often forgiven. But I think the point is, you should design your grid to minimize the number of 3-letter words given the theme set you're working with.
Mark McClain
Salem, Virginia, USA
https://crosswordsbymark.wordpress.com/

margoc19

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2019, 01:53:50 PM »
Very helpful, thanks everyone!

fhadpe

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2019, 03:20:18 PM »
RE:   a limited number of non-words/names (abbreviations, acronyms etc.) and a limited number of three-letter words in a puzzle.

Given that a limited number is best, is it feasible to submit a puzzle, for example, with 10% non-words/names (about 7 in a 15 x 15) and also have 20 three letter words? 

Or should the combined number of non-words (7) and three-letter words not exceed 20?

mmcbs

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2019, 03:30:59 PM »
The two things (non-words and 3-letter entries) are separate issues.
Mark McClain
Salem, Virginia, USA
https://crosswordsbymark.wordpress.com/

DarlaFanbridge

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2019, 11:45:16 AM »
Sometimes using a lot of three-letter words is something that cannot be helped.  I mean, the software I use does not have the ability to count three-letter words, unless I overlooked something.
- Jonathan

mmcbs

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2019, 11:56:08 AM »
Darla - just curious about what software you're using. Crossword Compiler shows the word count using FILE/STATISTICS/WORDS. It's a pretty standard thing to be able to know, so I should think other software has a similar feature.
Mark McClain
Salem, Virginia, USA
https://crosswordsbymark.wordpress.com/

DarlaFanbridge

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2019, 12:31:18 PM »
Forgot to mention, Darla is not my real first name.  I use Darla in my username, but I am actually Jonathan.  Sorry for causing any confusion.

As for software, I use CrossFire.  I created another thread earlier today asking about publications that use CrossFire.  I know it has the ability to count the number of words and number of black squares in the grid.  I am thinking there is a feature that counts the number of words based on letter count - but I will have to check it out.

I really would love to submit puzzles to the LA Times, but they do not accept CrossFire-created puzzles.  I did learn, however, they use Across Lite, which is a free software.  But then again, it's possible that if you submit crosswords using a free software, you may not get paid for your work.  If you get paid for your work, you should use a software you paid money for - at least, that's what my logic thinks.

That said, I am going to consider purchasing the professional version of Crossword Compiler someday.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2019, 12:40:12 PM by DarlaFanbridge »
- Jonathan

axlrosen

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2019, 03:54:22 AM »
CrossFire shows the number of N letter words on the Summary tab, in the "word counts" section.

jamesalex12

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Three-letter words
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2020, 10:41:53 AM »
Is there any great techniques have arrived to quick learn
I am working as a Infrastructure Architects at Field Engineer. It is a Marketplace for On-Demand telecom workforce,
Infrastructure Architects

cranberry44

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2020, 12:35:28 PM »
fhadpe (above) seems to indicate that the 10% of non-words includes names. Is that true?   i.e., Are all proper names included in the non-word count?

mmcbs

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2020, 12:54:46 PM »
No. Names are not non-words, unless they're abbreviated or initials (Thos. RLS)
Mark McClain
Salem, Virginia, USA
https://crosswordsbymark.wordpress.com/

cheapcookies

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Re: Three-letter words
« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2020, 01:05:58 PM »
The original question was how many 3-letter words can be in a 15x15. The next question:

How many 3-letter words can be in a 21x21 ? I've started counting and the number can be pretty high, from what I've seen.

-cc


 


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