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New York Times, Saturday, September 20, 2008

Author:
Joe Krozel
Editor:
Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
877/7/20066/14/201815
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
4147242621
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.48057
Joe Krozel

This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 58, Blocks: 37 Missing: {QXZ} Minimum word length: 4 Average word length: 6.48 This is puzzle # 12 for Mr. Krozel. NYT links: Across Lite
Joe Krozel notes:

This was my first effort with this puzzle genre. I had seen how solvers had complained about artificial-looking fill with similar puzzles ... particular if they contained RE- or -ER. Plus, I noticed how these sorts of words tended to muscle themselves into puzzles almost automatically, so I downgraded all such entries in my word list to varying degrees before starting.

As the puzzle progressed, I was happy to see some lively fill enter the puzzle: ARTICLE I, JEB BUSH, I FORGOT, BETCHA, GEM STONE, TAN LINE, JIBED, GLINDA. Since this was rather rare for the genre at the time, I tolerated a few entries ending in -ER ... but limited myself to only ones that sounded natural in conversation: SPEEDERS, SCEPTER, KEENER and to a lesser extent EMOTER and SEEKERS.

In the end, I still received a certain amount of criticism over the latter, as if it weren't balanced out by all the good stuff. So, my advice to fellow constructors is to downgrade those less-than-Scrabbly prefixes and suffixes before getting started. (And that would include the -EST, -ESS, and -EE endings).

1
J
2
I
3
B
4
E
5
D
6
G
7
L
8
I
9
N
10
D
11
A
12
E
M
O
T
E
13
R
14
S
15
P
E
E
D
E
R
S
16
B
E
T
C
H
A
17
H
I
M
A
L
A
Y
A
18
B
A
S
H
I
N
19
I
N
S
P
I
R
E
S
20
U
N
W
I
S
E
21
P
A
T
E
N
T
S
22
S
T
A
N
C
E
23
I
F
O
R
G
O
T
24
H
I
N
G
E
25
A
N
O
N
26
T
A
S
S
27
E
L
28
R
E
29
D
30
A
31
N
32
T
33
N
I
34
C
E
35
E
P
E
E
36
S
37
S
38
C
39
E
40
P
T
E
R
41
I
M
P
U
R
E
42
T
A
N
L
I
N
E
43
S
A
R
T
R
E
44
N
A
R
R
A
T
E
D
45
A
N
O
R
A
K
46
A
R
T
I
C
L
E
I
47
A
D
V
I
C
E
48
P
R
I
C
I
E
S
T
49
K
E
E
N
E
R
50
S
Y
N
O
D
S
51
D
R
O
S
S
© 2008, The New York TimesNo. 0920 ( 21,501 )
Across
1
Agreed : JIBED
6
"Only bad witches are ugly" speaker : GLINDA
12
Drama queen : EMOTER
14
They might be weaving : SPEEDERS
16
"You ___!" : BETCHA
17
Asian range, with "the" : HIMALAYA
18
Break by hitting : BASHIN
19
Prompts : INSPIRES
20
Apt to turn out badly : UNWISE
21
Trademark relatives : PATENTS
22
Something taken before swinging : STANCE
23
Lame excuse : IFORGOT
24
Opening and closing facilitator : HINGE
25
Soon enough : ANON
26
Loafer attachment : TASSEL
28
Common household pest : REDANT
33
"Sweet!" : NICE
35
Sports equipment wired for scoring : EPEES
37
Bit of regalia : SCEPTER
41
Mixed with something else : IMPURE
42
Separator of light and dark : TANLINE
43
"Les Mains Sales" playwright, 1948 : SARTRE
44
Delivered by a third person, perhaps : NARRATED
45
Snow-covered cover-up : ANORAK
46
It contains the three-fifths clause : ARTICLEI
47
It's typically easier to give than take : ADVICE
48
Setting one back the most : PRICIEST
49
Comparatively shrewd : KEENER
50
Ecclesiastical districts : SYNODS
51
Trivial stuff : DROSS
Down
1
Founder of the Foundation for Florida's Future : JEBBUSH
2
"That wasn't a joke!" : IMEANTIT
3
Its capital is Gaborone : BOTSWANA
4
Artistic impressions? : ETCHINGS
5
Bursts open, as legume seedpods : DEHISCES
6
Set piece? : GEMSTONE
7
Ballerina, often : LEAPER
8
Inactivity : IDLING
9
By : NEARTO
10
Least exciting : DRYEST
11
Politico Hutchinson and others : ASAS
13
Asian royal : RANEE
14
Send from abroad : SHIPIN
15
Blouse coverer : PINAFORE
25
Heirs, legally : ALIENEES
27
Licenses : ENTITLES
29
Said while pounding the fist, say : DEMANDED
30
One signing off : APPROVER
31
It's free of charge : NEUTRINO
32
Apartment adjuncts : TERRACES
34
It needs to be built up when it's bad : CREDIT
36
Participants in a kids' game : SEEKERS
37
Like some nights and eyes : STARRY
38
Deliver by truck : CARTIN
39
Lucia's brother in "Lucia di Lammermoor" : ENRICO
40
Opposite of turbulent : PLACID
41
Singer of the 1991 hit "Wicked Game" : ISAAK
44
Refreshing things : NAPS

Answer summary: 2 unique to this puzzle, 4 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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