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1 puzzle by Adam Simon Levine
with constructor comments

TotalDebut
19/25/2021
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0000001
Scrabble
1.54
Adam Simon Levine
Sat 9/25/2021
BARONMARIGOLD
UTEROGREATSOUL
SEVENMNEMOSYNE
KAISERLBSAGA
ESEWUSSESCLAN
REWATCHEDTHIRD
CAKEDAHISEE
CHICXULUBCRATER
HEROESCOTES
ALOSSMEDIAMAIL
LINTRODENTNNE
UPSOOHGENEVA
PAINTBALLNOMAD
ADDITIVESELIDE
SETONENDDICER

It's a real thrill and a huge honor to be publishing my first NYT crossword!

I come from a long line of crossword fans and have been solving puzzles since I was a teenager. (My grandfather once sent me a letter at summer camp in the form of an acrostic.) I started constructing a few years ago. My first published puzzle was a prime-number themed puzzle in The Mathematical Intelligencer, and I had the honor of being a guest constructor for Matt Gaffney's Weekly Crossword Contest right around the same time. I post occasional puzzles on my own page; the title refers to the field of math that I study, knot theory and low-dimensional topology. (By day, I'm a math professor at Duke University.) A lot of my puzzles have been metas and themed puzzles that touch on my various nerdy interests; this puzzle is actually the first themeless I've written.

The seed entry for this puzzle was 33-Across, the site of arguably the most important event in the history of the planet Earth and a pretty great combination of letters to boot. Getting it to intersect 5-Down (a slightly dated reference, I guess!) was an added bonus. I was also really pleased with how the northeast corner turned out. My original clue for 27-Down was "ABBA, for one," which turned out to be a bit too much of an inside joke with myself. I'm very grateful to Wyna, Joel, and Sam for their edits throughout the process, which have really improved the quality of the puzzle.