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4 puzzles by Debbie Ellerin
with constructor comments

TotalDebutLatestCollabs
43/9/201511/15/20190
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0100012
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.57000
Debbie Ellerin
Fri 11/15/2019
ELCHAPOSCROLL
LALALANDARABIA
BRASILIADETEST
ADDSLOTTWHALE
LEONARDCOHEN
RATEDRSEOUL
EXISTICANTEVEN
NEESNITSAKA
OLDSCORESJAPES
CROONGANESH
ISTHATATHING
MAIMSDIONROLF
IMPISHSUSHIBAR
NOIDEATRUELOVE
GANTRYSPRYEST

This puzzle began with IS THAT A THING and LEONARD COHEN. I like trying to find phrases that I've heard in real life, such as I CANT EVEN, and incorporating them into themeless puzzles. The phrase IS THAT A THING is what I often say to myself while constructing a puzzle. Also, I am a huge fan of the late, great LEONARD COHEN and have been trying to work him into a grid for a while, so I'm happy to debut this entry.

A few entries, like LISLE, GANESH, and GANTRY (as clued) are tough, but the crosses seem reasonable, so I think they're fair for a Friday. As always, I hope that the good outweighs the bad, and it's enjoyable to solve.

Thanks to Will Shortz and team for publishing this, especially on the weekend of my birthday — a nice birthday present!

Sat 4/13/2019
BADGEALLURBAN
OPERASEABREEZE
OGLESKOREANAIR
SATEENIVANUZO
TRANSYLVANIA
GITABUSHWA
ADDONDREAMTEAM
HERBALONGARIA
EVILQUEENPROFS
MOBIUSUGLI
NOTORIOUSRBG
IRKRENOONBAIL
MEASUREUPGONZO
DELIMEATSERTES
BLESSLEISNOTS

I am happy to have my third puzzle in the New York Times. I wrote this puzzle after seeing the documentary RBG. I am glad to debut her nickname, NOTORIOUS RBG.

Other answers I like are EVILQUEEN, DREAMTEAM, KOREANAIR, and the talented actress UZO Aduba.

My least favorite answer is LEOIV, but a 5-letter word ending in V did not have many good alternatives. Sorry about that one.

Enjoy your Saturday!

POW Sat 7/23/2016
ACROBATSTIFFS
FRENEMIESELLIE
FAMILYGUYLIANE
ENACTHRSLAMAS
CINESTACKDELT
TADKOWTOWSWBA
TUBASAUPAIR
SLIMMEDINNARDS
KITCARANZIO
IVSRUFFIANBUM
LEANPARTARAMA
LASIKGOICARPS
SLICEIPADMINIS
EIGHTNOTSOSURE
TENETPETNAMES

This is my second puzzle in the NYT. The first was a Monday puzzle over a year ago.

I started constructing this puzzle after I got a super nice and encouraging rejection letter from Will Shortz on a previous themeless submission. Jeff Chen, with whom I had collaborated on a different puzzle, was willing to help, and reviewed many different versions of this puzzle. (Thanks, Jeff!)

I tried to make the longer answers interesting while keeping the undesirable fill to a minimum. Hope it worked.

Originally, I'd thought this puzzle would be slated for a Friday, but I am happy to see it run on a Saturday.

Mon 3/9/2015
BETASAPSSHAPE
OVENBREACOBRA
RISKTAKERHOBOS
ECLAIRLIFERAFT
STAARMUMA
TROUBLEAHEAD
ALOHANEALLIE
LIMESIRSSWANK
AMAACRENOLTE
SORRYCHARLIE
EENSIPACT
CLUEMEINBETTOR
AISLEBOARDGAME
PREENATRAIRAN
SARDIREFSFIST

I've enjoyed solving crossword puzzles for a long time. About a year ago, I wanted to learn how to construct. Fortunately, I found a mentor, Nancy Salomon, who was willing to guide me through the process. Thank you, Nancy! I've always been a fan of board games and that led to the idea for this puzzle. This puzzle was my third submission to the NYT, and I was thrilled when it was accepted and slotted for a Monday. Exactly nine months later, here it is.