Puzzle 22: Freestyle 14. En garde!

Last Tuesday’s Freestyle 12 solution

Last Wednesday’s Freestyle 13 solution

Get the PDF here!

Get the PUZ here!

Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.31

Before I get to anything else, you might have noticed (and if you didn’t, feel free to notice now) that there’s a new independent crossworder among the ranks. Go now and check out Lena Webb, and I know you will not be disappointed! You’ll find some very interesting reads there to go along with the cruciverbal exploits.

Well, back to the “normal” schedule, I suppose. Not a normal shape to this puzzle, though. But I can explain: this was intended to be a triple-10-stack without longer vertical answers in the corners, but my seeds dictated otherwise. I was fortunate enough to have two 10-letter seeds (13-Across and 17-Across) that I discovered that I could stack, so, instead of forcing anything, I split up the stacks in the upper left and lower right and took out a pair of blocks in the other corners to be able to fit another couple of good entries there. I had to count it several times just to make sure it was at 72 words; it doesn’t really look like it is upon first glance.

Besides 13- and 17-Across, I actually had three other seeds: 44-Across and 60-Across and 10-Down. The mini-seeds at 27-Down, 55-Across, 46-Down, and 24-Across came about during construction. Also, I hope you like the clues for 25-Across and 16-Across, because I particularly liked them myself (if I can toot my own horn for a bit).

Not that I’m particularly concerned with aesthetics, but I think here’s an example of how adding a pair of “cheater” squares can actually enhance the visual look of the grid: it actually looks like a couple of swords pointing into the corners. (There’s a “cross swords”/”crosswords” pun in there somewhere.) I had to add that pair for construction reasons, of course, but that is an extra little thing that pops out to me.

My favorite thing that I learned from this puzzle is that 10-Down won a Grammy for that album: I’ve liked this musician’s work for a while now, and I didn’t know that that album, or any in this musician’s discography, won a Grammy.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better? One never knows, does one, when love comes along? Do S&M clubs appreciate the song “You Always Hurt the One You Love”? Did you hear the one about the cannibal who passed his brother in the woods?

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Friday!


One thought on “Puzzle 22: Freestyle 14. En garde!”

  1. Thanks for the shout-out! There is smoke pouring out of my printer from all these amazing indie sites. My clipboard is laden and now that I’ve found your blog I might have to quit my job!


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