Category Archives: Variety Puzzles

Puzzle 451: Anagram Crossword 6. I encourage you to twist your words.


Last Friday’s Sumwords solution

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Get the PUZ here!


Word count: 78
Mean word length: 4.72


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I got some positive feedback about the anagram crossword a couple of weeks ago, so I was feeling another one today. I’m thinking of making this a semiregular feature (every month, or however… not sure about the frequency), which is good, because I really enjoy making these.


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Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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

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Puzzle 449: Sumwords. A little from column A, a little from column B.


Last Friday’s Wordominoes solution

** Read below before deciding which version to open **

Get the “Easier” PDF here!

Get the “Harder” PDF here!

Get the “Expert” PDF here!


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I’m on a bit of a variety puzzle kick. I don’t know if this will continue, but I came up with this idea and wanted to implement it, so here it is. As you know, I like anagrams more than a person probably should. The crux of this puzzle is that you take two words with a common letter between them, remove that common letter from one of the words, and anagram the result to make another one. You’ll see clues arranged in three columns, and the premise is that you use one word clued in column A and one clued in column B and anagram them as I just described to form one word clued in column C. To decide which version you want to try your hand at, here are what each of them entails:

Easier: The clues in column A and B and its corresponding word in column C are each in the same row. Column C clues contain the length of the object word in parentheses.

Harder: The clues in column A, B, and C are listed in random order, and the puzzle is to piece together which one from column A goes with which one in column B to make which one in column C. Column A, B, and C clues all contain the length of its object word.

Expert: Same as the Harder version, except there is no length hint for the clues in column A and B.


Thanks so much to all who’ve left a tip! It’s much appreciated, believe me.


Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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

Puzzle 447: Wordominoes 7. Round and round we go… where it stops, you’ll have to know…


Last Friday’s Anagram Crossword solution

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I’m coming back for another go-around, so to speak. for another Wordominoes puzzle. If you have missed the previous ones, they can all be found here. If you don’t know the history of this puzzle type, you can look through the previous posts or endure this little spiel. I wanted to make a three-dimensional crossword without having to resort to actual three-dimensional means. I came around to this idea, where every letter is triply checked: each letter is in a row, a column, and a cage. It certainly adds an interesting dimension to construction, as you have to worry that each letter fits in three different answers, not just two. It can get frustrating when you find a dupe (luckily, I didn’t here), as you often can’t just change one letter, because that changes three words, not two.


Thanks so much to all who’ve left a tip! It’s much appreciated, believe me.


Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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

Puzzle 445: Anagram Crossword 5. Time for a lot of rearrangement.


Last Friday’s freestyle solution

Get the PDF here!

Get the PUZ here!


Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.22


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I haven’t done one of these in a long while. So I figured it was time to mix it up (heh heh) a bit and throw in one of these. I hope it doesn’t upset (heh heh, again) you that I’m throwing in a variety puzzle today. The twist (OK TIM, STOP WITH THE ANAGRAM PUNS) here is that the clues point to not their corresponding entries, but the anagrams of the entries. Unlike my first four, I decided to see if I could make one of these like my other freestyle grids — 72 words or less. Now, of course, the point of this grid isn’t the sparkly fill but the puzzle of anagramming. Hopefully it’ll take you all a little while to wrestle with this thing.


Thanks so much to all who’ve left a tip! It’s much appreciated, believe me.


Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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

Puzzle 403: Wordominoes 6. Be prepared for the domino effect.


Last Friday’s freestyle solution

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I could write a book of these things. In fact, if I ever get enough time, I think I may. As I’ve said before, these are really interesting to construct. Why? They must be done by hand, and it works my brain approximately 150% harder having to keep in mind that each letter in the 10×10 grid appears in three answers instead of two. Hopefully it keeps your head spinning for just the right amount of time before it falls for you. Past feedback for this kind of puzzle has indicated just that kind of experience, which is what I’m aiming for… stare at the grid for a while wondering how you’re going to solve it, then make a teeny bit of headway, which drives the wedge in and leads to more and more headway until the grid is filled. If you like this one, and you missed the older ones, they can all be found here.


Thanks so much to all who’ve left a tip! It’s much appreciated, believe me.


Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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

Puzzle 367: Wordominoes 5. What goes around comes around.

Last Friday’s freestyle solution

Get the PDF here!


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I love constructing these Wordominoes grids. The construction process is so interesting, mainly because every letter is triply checked — each letter is in an across answer, a down answer, and in a cage — and the process is entirely by hand. There’s no software for this. Like a normal crossword, of course, I have a seed entry (which is, in this case, in cage 1) that I build the grid around, but I have to also make sure it works in the grander scheme of the rows and columns. If these strike your fancy, and you missed the others, here are the previous four for your solving pleasure.


Thanks so much to all who’ve left a tip! It’s much appreciated, believe me.


Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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

Puzzle 363: Split Decisions Two Ways 5.

Last Friday’s freestyle solution

Get the PDF here!


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I’ve had a few people ask about the Split Decisions Two Ways puzzles, so I’m back with another one! If you’re not familiar with the original Split Decisions puzzle, created by the great George Bredehorn and passed down to the also great Fred Piscop (who creates them for the New York Times variety page occasionally), it’s a crossword that involves pairs of words that differ by only two consecutive letters; you’re given the letter pairs only and the puzzle is to figure out the pairs of words from the letter pairs. My version gives a bit of a twist to it, as the “split decision” boxes are to be read both across and down. Don’t worry, there are instructions if you don’t know what I’m talking about! Here’s a history of my past Split Decisions Two Ways posts if you find this one intriguing…


Thanks so much to all who’ve left a tip! It’s much appreciated, believe me.


Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.


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