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50 puzzles with comments from Will Shortz — 4/21/2019 to 3/29/2020

Will Shortz

Showing 50 out of 291 total with editor comments.

Use the older and newer links above to see more.

Sun 3/29/2020KEEP THE CHANGE
KODAKRUBSCOBLICIT
ALIENERATENOFUTURE
YESNOAGREEDTOLISTEN
TELLLEFTFROMRIGHT
SQUALIDTIPOPIOIDS
OURSVEALSCOLDTNUT
BIBTEAREDFEINTGNU
DISHLAGUNASNOWDEN
BAPESBODICESWOODW
LAMESLEXEMESHOGH
AGRANADAINADAZEI
CETSCONCHESTONIT
KTASKADVERSEADESE
BONESAWSNAILSESPN
ARFSUSANSOLOEDOOF
WIFICYANSNALAINTO
SOANDSOKONAVENGER
SPOTTHEDIFFERENCE
BAHAMAIDITARODDOBBY
ADORERLLCDANAEMOTE
MOTTSLYEETSYDEBUT

Ricky Cruz, 22, of Glendale, Calif., is a video game concept artist — a maker of detailed designs for other artists to use when creating 3-D game environments. He says this puzzle is an attempt to turn a crossword "into a fun visual experience." The unusual grid alone tells you something novel is up.

This is Ricky's third puzzle for The Times, and his first Sunday.

POW Sun 3/22/2020BRING YOUR 'A' GAME
PAPASCOMBATSLIMJIM
TBILLBLUECAPPENTODE
ACQUIREACHOIRINCENSE
STUMPERHERFCCATBAT
VENOMANOISEANNOYS
INSIPIDSRIITAN
LSUVIMPUMMELSJAW
APPALLAPAULIDSPONY
REDBEANSNASSAUDEVIL
SWORETOAUNTEMCERISE
ARIVALSARRIVALS
AFGHANTEEHEEOUTOFIT
CROATDEEDEEMILANESE
DEEMPEAATTACKSATAX
CDSTOYLANDENETOT
PASOIRECANDIES
AVOWELAVOWALKLEIN
BASALDEMBOSLEARNED
ONTRIALAPATCHYAPACHE
RCADOMESATHOMESPAIN
TELSTARPESTOSEENSY

Brendan Emmett Quigley of Brookline, Mass., has been creating puzzles for The Times since 1996 when he was a senior at college. This is his 170th regular crossword for the paper.

For the past 12 years, he has played for the Boston Typewriter Orchestra, a percussion ensemble whose only instruments are old typewriters. You can check them out on YouTube. Brendan's the member with glasses and a beard and who is follically challenged on top.

Sun 3/15/2020READY, SET ... GETS LOW!
ABBAICUSCADSAPCALC
DEEDFOPOAKENHOORAH
ALLHAILHALLALEARMANI
GLIDELIBELGAGKANYE
EYEITALORAKEDCAF
BOOBLURREDBLUEBIRD
DEPAULTEAPOYBRANDO
IMANICEIMOELITISM
SONERVOUSNOSERVICE
UTEDENCHNEMEANAXES
SERRACHANDENSHUEVO
ESAUWARREDNOIREDEW
STEVEDOREDIVASTORE
SALTINEPATREDOUST
AGEISTAGENTSIDOTOO
DUTCHTOWNTOUCHDOWN
TIMOREOSRAISESPF
ALEUTRECSTONYEMCEE
LETTERBCHORDKEYBOARD
ERRATAIHOPEIREONCE
SAYHEYTIPSYESPSTYX

Nancy Stark, of New York City, is a writer, lyricist and former editor for the Literary Guild book club. Will Nediger, of London, Ontario, is a professional crossword constructor. They met through a notice that a friend posted for Nancy on Facebook seeking a collaborator. Nancy came up with this puzzle's theme and wrote most of the clues. Will did the grid.

This is their third collaboration for The Times, but their first Sunday together.

Sun 3/8/2020WHAT'S SHAKING?
CROWSARTHUROPALS
BAABAAMOROSELADLE
RUBNINTHEWOUNDDREAM
AGRODIOSTRAFFICNIP
ILESROILSLEEDESI
SEREPEKOETSARPERON
ERASMUSWITHAGRAINOFN
EATSALARYINNSTE
SPICESUPAXEISNT
WACOOARSCAPNOODLES
IRONNWATERTAFFYRAVE
GANDHITUNETARAIMAX
ONESDDTNONEVENT
IAMVIMDRIESTCUE
NLAKECITYUTAHPERUSES
ULCERLIENSODASPURL
MOLYBINMEWEDATNO
PTACRAYOLAOUTSWUSS
TITLETHENOFTHEEARTH
ENSUEITSELFANGLES
DEKEDMOSSESIDOLS

Laura Taylor Kinnel of Newtown, Pa., teaches math and is the director of studies at a Friends boarding school near Philadelphia. She has been solving crosswords since childhood but just started constructing them a little over a year ago. A cousin who solved a 2018 Christmas puzzle of Laura's encouraged her to make more. She was pleasantly surprised to discover all the help available online to new puzzle makers.

This is her second Times crossword, both Sundays.

POW Sun 3/1/2020LETTER DICTATION
SHAMANKEEPBIGBEN
OOLALAMOMMASOPRANO
SPLITPEASOUPBOWSERJR
EOSARGOTLOOEROS
TRONGIVETHESTINKEYE
DONNEOREOOSNASL
EGOAPSEANNASUIORB
LONGTIMENOSEEKILLFEE
IDEENOLIKEYNITAFTS
NICKQEDBBCAZURE
OHBYTHEWAYYEAHWHYNOT
ROLESRIBFAAAHAB
AUERBIZHANSOLOURSA
TRESBONBEINTHEMOMENT
ESPRAGDOLLSTEMFLO
CPASWWIACEABRAM
GREENTEAEXTRACTNOEL
LENSFDRISLAMASU
USSENATEAREYOUWITHME
GEOTAGSCARATAVEENO
STRAPSLESSHELDIN

Sam Trabucco, 27, is a cryptocurrency trader who divides his time between San Francisco and Hong Kong. He got into crosswords as a child by playing competitive Scrabble. He says, "My first attempt at making one was fueled by the (very wrong) assumption that making a crossword would be essentially the same as playing Scrabble."

This is Sam's 24th puzzle for The Times since his debut in 2015.

Sun 2/23/2020RESOLVED
DESPAIRDRJSEPTORME
ENCARTAYOOTRIONEIL
EGOTRIPSKYRINGCYCLE
REPRESSYOURLUCKHMONG
LEIAHENIOCISEVEY
ORIELSDAKSEALE
EMITRELATETOTHEPARTY
VIDASTALKHUHDOUGIE
EXACTSTAINTEALRILE
TOPITEMUNITARDS
AIRRESENTPACKINGLAH
THELORAXSARAGIS
PACEFLEDLIMOSFELIX
AVENGECEOMERITCONE
RESTOCKSANDBONDSOWNS
SORTATYRAICAHN
IMPGOTHOYSTAEDAM
NOOSERETURNTHETABLES
SNOWSKIERUIESIDEONE
UGLIINLANNEARTSALE
MOSTRASPSOLROOTFOR

Sophia Maymudes is a senior at Carleton College in Minnesota, studying computer science and math. This is her third crossword for The Times. Her father, David Maymudes, is a senior staff software engineer for Google in Seattle. After years of being Sophia's test solver, he decided he wanted to construct, too.

They write: "We presume there have been other father/daughter co-constructors, but we were wondering if there have been any others where the daughter was the one who introduced the father to constructing." I can think of just one other father/daughter pair, from 1998. I believe this is the first one in which the daughter is the veteran puzzlemaker.

Sun 2/16/2020NUMBER THEORY
DRATDATIVESLIMUP
RECUTCINEMAXSPANISH
INTROAMILATELANDTAX
QUINCEJELLYQUINCE
POTUSCUSPEXAMS
GERMANAYEAYESIRMAW
DAFOEABAFTTHOLORI
ELFDOBBYTHEHOUSEELF
WASABIPEAOVIDTIBET
GETITHADESREPAY
SEIZEPOWERSEIZE
ACITYMOTESSOMNI
AMISSTAUTGODISGOOD
DUETOTHEFACTTHATDUE
INNSMRSKAZOONOICE
ORCDIETMENUSFRENCH
SAYSOARCSSIEVE
LOSTINTRANSLATION
BUSYBEEAKRONOHDETOO
ITALIANBIOLOGYARTOO
GENYERBATONSMYOB

Sam Ezersky, 24, is the associate puzzles editor at The Times. A "puzzlehead" since childhood, he sold his first crossword to the paper, a Saturday, when he was 17. His job at The Times includes testing/fact-checking the daily Mini crossword and curating the daily digital Spelling Bee.

This puzzle started when he noticed a curious property of 26-Across.

Sun 2/9/2020THE EMOJI MOVIE
KINGHOGANPROTIPELF
ASEAAGORARAVINECEO
THELORDOFTHERINGSHER
GAPEDCASEDREPORT
WHEATONSHUTSDATA
HANDYOWETOTITANIC
ASTOCITIZENKANEMOP
LSATANTSELKSTAME
ELIREPOSFLAKYDUMBO
DELOUSEDIECISETSON
PLANETOFTHEAPES
OUSTERLENTOLORISES
SPEEDSMASHUNDUEAPU
LEWDSTIRMEETSLIP
ONEMARYPOPPINSTAPE
DRACULAELLENNAMER
LUGENAIADADORING
AGEINGNINNYSPORT
BIGALEAGUEOFTHEIROWN
EVARENNETFLAIRERIE
TEDDROOLSFUNDSKONG

Brian Kulman, of Los Gatos, Calif., is a semiretired executive in the technology business. He started solving New York Times crosswords during high school when a teacher said they'd help improve his SAT vocabulary score. ("It definitely worked!")

He loves movies and collects movie posters. He hopes this puzzle evokes a lot of good memories from movie lovers.

Sun 2/2/2020AUDUBON SOCIETY
TRANSAGEDODDSALBUS
BALOOROLEPERMTEENA
SHERYLCROWSCOUTFINCH
PAVEIHOPLOTRSELL
LEARNGEOTAPAMUSE
SIGOURNEYWEAVER
APOLUNEPAPDIALECT
FRANKIETOTEMLIESLOW
RUMENDATSEAILEANA
ABETEASYRUNSPRAY
TALIBYOLODINGTOILS
AMESTOREROSMELC
ABSOLUTRAGONDUELERS
YOUROCKSTOICOSMOSIS
ENEWHOSWEDRUNKSTAN
SAMSASTIARSEGALS
ATMSAFGHANSTSAR
BARREARTMUSEUMTYLER
RITADOVEASPLADYBIRD
IDITARODIKEATALANTA
MANILOWLYNEMERGES

Brian Herrick, of Brooklyn, does communications for a nonprofit that funds diabetes research. Christopher Adams, of Iowa City, Iowa, is a puzzlemaker/crossword constructor. (Guess who wrote the clue for 71-Across?) They met through the Crossword Puzzle Collaboration Directory on Facebook.

The puzzle's theme idea was Brian's. Chris added to Brian's examples. They spent an afternoon filling the grid together by email.

Sun 1/26/2020FOOD ENGINEERING
MRPIBBSPURCARBATM
EARNERHIREACORNSIA
SKINNYJEANSTIMEFLIES
SEMINAANTENDALANIS
ANAITODAISSINE
BARGRAPHSRIPCURRENTS
AMYABUOBITSCHOREO
YODELERNAPESCOTS
ELSEAGEDMINEGRR
OBIEINTERRANDARIA
WHATASTEALLIZCAMBAGE
ANTEACESBONETARMS
DOETVADALOGSLIM
MOONSLENTTOOLATE
TWOBITFLASHHADRUE
CORNERBOOTHEYEPOPPER
HEADEUROAVERIO
ALPACASHOPLONECLIP
COPYPASTEUPANDVANISH
HOERACERFERNALICIA
APRAIDEFAMENICEST

Erik Agard, 26, became the crossword editor of USA Today in December, the youngest in the paper's history. He's also a former national crossword champion and a three-day champion on "Jeopardy!"

Last year Erik had 21 crosswords published in The Times, the most of any contributor.

Sun 1/19/2020BIOTECHNOLOGY
REFIADSTHEROSEBLOB
ERINMINDVANUATUREPO
HEDGMOORPLANTAGOVER
ALEEARCANALEGGEWING
BOLEYNAFIRERERAN
SNIDEETTLESPADERETS
GOOBERSENSORSENTIRE
MADATSTELESLEROUX
CAFLOLASPADTIRANE
RURALUSAARISENJETS
ITORGENESPLICINGASHE
BONNUPTAKEATMINCAN
STOLESLARCODOROTT
MAPLESSANKASNORAD
EVADESENCYSTSDENIED
REGAERATEHOMOGINNES
ENDUPGMAILEASTLA
HAYDNBLULOTRIMINWET
AVOWERATIONKNEEEITY
TIKIWANNABESEMIONER
EDENSWEENEYSOONESS

Victor Barocas is a professor of biomedical engineering at the University of Minnesota with more than 100 published works in the field. Given his profession, the genesis of this puzzle (spelled out at 71-Across) is probably obvious. Besides the theme, Victor included colorful fill like 8- and 29-Across and 8-, 43-, 56-, 82- and 100-Down — all of which help make for enjoyable solving.

This is Victor's 14th crossword for The Times and his fifth Sunday in the past year.

Sun 1/12/2020STATE OF CONFUSION
MAZDASHERODHMOSEAS
ONEACTADOBEEELUCLA
ANSWERINGMACHINEROAR
NUTSEGGYMAUNASELMA
ALSORANSAFRICANLION
NEMOIRELEEWAY
PATAERATORSWINGBY
SQUIRRELEDAWAYLOOIE
AULDEMSEVESTOTO
TAILINGCROAKEDDEW
PERSUASIVEWRITING
PCBSALINASTAPERED
UHUHFROGAHAHILO
GALASSWORDANDSHIELD
SIBLINGEDUCATEFAO
FLORALASLMRED
AVOCADOROLLDIALECTS
SOLOSATEITWEANBOOP
ACLUKNOWSATHINGORTWO
HAIRLEIPLIESEDITED
IBETMRSSKEETRESALE

Evan Mahnken is a high school chemistry teacher in Amherst, Mass. David Steinberg is a puzzles and games editor for Andrews McMeel Universal syndicate in Kansas City, Mo.

They're each 23. They met at a crossword tournament two years ago. Evan originally sent a daily-size version of this puzzle to David, who proposed Sunday-sizing it with more theme examples. They collaborated on the grid by sending each other screenshots back and forth by email.

Wed 1/8/2020
ISHMRTOADFETA
MOEMORRIEAMAN
ALARMBELLSVICE
COLOMBOSORROW
AGEADELE
AURORABOREALIS
BASSOMATTULNA
RNADABESCASP
EDGERIALAGNUS
AWESOMEBLOSSOM
STYNECTU
ETCETCHALIBUT
YARNABPOSITIVE
EXECMARLINREN
SIDEPHOTOGDAN

See Wordplay for Will Shortz's comments.

Sun 1/5/2020STRESSED OUT
LARDSSWAGFROGSNASA
AFOOTAIDEIONIAOPEC
PROJECTGUTENBERGHOAR
SOSORRYTVSALEESSO
ESTEARACHEERSALTON
DOGPRESENTCOMPANY
URGESUPONYOHOHOTAM
PERFECTSCORESUNREELS
SHEATHEDIFSTOOL
HEATERICDUMAULTRA
OASPRODUCELABELSHER
TRYTOEROSGENESEAR
WOLFSHOPANATOLE
MAHALIACONTRACTTERMS
ARETENSORCOLTTRYST
DISCOUNTSTORESEEN
ESSAYERADUGOUTSPSA
ATITADAPOITATTLES
BIASCONVERSEALLSTARS
EDNATUGONERIETONGA
TESTSTEWSRELYOPTED

Will Nediger, of London, Ontario, is a professional crossword constructor and writer of trivia questions. He's a regular contributor to National Academic Quiz Tournaments, which supplies questions for quiz-bowl tournaments at the middle-school, high-school and college levels.

Since 2000, Will has had more Sunday crosswords in The Times (14, including today's) than any other Canadian.

Sun 12/29/2019NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS
SPOILLALAWSHUTWART
PUNNYARISELASHIGOR
CLEANOUTTHEHOUSENAME
ALPSURLDAMEDEEPAK
SEEFRIENDSMOREOFTEN
MARCIESAIATTA
OHCOOLSNOGSSRSRO
SEENSAYGROWMYNESTEGG
HANDKONWEIRCLEARY
EDTMERESALTIHARLEM
GIVEUPOLDHABITS
SHERRITEAKSNODEMBA
AERATERAMISONTEEN
WATCHWHATIEATBAGHDAD
LEIALYSCARSIRIUS
EARSDREDLOTTO
PLANAPERFECTGETAWAY
SHALOMDEADINKATIT
WAILORGANIZEMYOFFICE
ISLENEEDTAKEITIVOS
MEANANDYSPENTSTENT

Andrew Chaikin, of San Francisco, is an electronic-blues musician who goes by the name Kid Beyond. He has played with such luminaries as James Brown, Ray Charles, Will.I.Am and Sara Bareilles.

This is his third Sunday crossword for The Times. Last January he made a resolution to have another puzzle in the paper by the end of the year. In October, with time running out, he thought, "What's an idea they'd want to publish by December 31?" Voilà!

Sun 12/15/2019DOING A DOUBLE TAKE
POBOYSNIPERSMADAM
OHARASHONOREELAMESA
PITCHYUPGRADEPITCHY
TOSSSASEDIPSSITH
OAFTHEGEMINIDRE
PROTEAMKARATPROTEAM
TREATPINELOGENTRY
RRATINGTROTSKY
STRIPLINGSTRIPLING
HUELETHSTTONROO
ENEWSROSEPETALELATE
LEVITESTHECWLEVITES
FRERESGEEWHIZNICEST
IMCOOLNOODLE
HIDENAMESAKESNUMB
MOUSSESOMANIMOUSSES
MUDTIRESOCALALGEBRA
EATOFLANDS
BOXERSPIRATICBOXERS
MAITRETRITONEAMELIA
ITSSADSEALEGSYESMOM

Christina Iverson of Ames, Iowa, is a stay-at-home mom with an almost-2-year-old and a child on the way. She started solving puzzles only in the summer of 2018. She found it was an easily interrupted activity when her baby was constantly waking up in the evenings. Also, "Crosswords met my need for something more intellectually stimulating than reading ‘Goodnight Moon.' " Soon she made it a goal to have a puzzle published in The Times.

Her collaborator, Jeff Chen, is a writer and professional crossword constructor in Seattle. They met through Jeff's daily column on the website XWord Info.

Sun 12/8/2019"LOOKIN' GOOD!"
JARASCAPABBOTUTES
AFEWKELSOTRULYFETA
BREEZINESSRECAPFAHD
BALIINDONESIAEDITED
EMERGESHADTOEZINE
REDDTIRADEBOYZIIMEN
NINETODINEATESS
INASECSHORINGMYB
NADIAGEEZERUSBECKO
KRISTENWIIGNEHILOLZ
ENDODOSEETOIAMNEZ
RIALIMAMNINTENDOWII
SASEFEMSTREWSPLANE
XVIABUSIVEWHYYES
OPSWEEZERNERVED
JACOBRIISAGREERSPCA
ILUVUSNIPSNESTERS
BELUGAEASYONTHEEYES
WALLLUNGSOVEREXPOSE
ALEEAMIESDINARATTN
SERSSPADEADELEEST

Emily Carroll, of New York City, is a 2016 medical school graduate who just finished her residency. She is applying for fellowships and expects to get news (fingers crossed!) around the time this crossword is published. The genesis of the puzzle was 41-Across, with its unusual letter pattern. Part of that pattern led her to think of 110-Across, which became the puzzle's "revealer" entry.

This is Emily's 10th crossword for The Times and her second Sunday.

Sun 12/1/2019ACTUALLY ...
EMUGORKIBABESNAPTO
DIPUCONNASONREPEAL
INSPITEOFRHODEISLAND
TIEONREPOLUVTENTH
STPETERSSQUARELAURA
CARATAUTENDETAT
UPTOPARSTEELESS
TEARINTORIVALEVER
APINGHOLYROMANEMPIRE
HALLAHOREEXITSIGNS
SOLEASLAPEGAN
ATPRESENTIRISESEBB
CHINESECHECKERSRATIO
KENOFLOESATTESTTO
TBASTAIDEASIEST
LOCOTTOARTYEMTS
IPADSARABICNUMERALS
KITESCPRAHASOILED
ENGLISHHORNMETRODOME
NEUTERAMENIBEAMYIN
SSTARSNAPACYANSDST

Patrick Merrell, of Vero Beach, Fla., is a freelance cartoonist, writer, graphic designer, photographer and puzzlemaker — "all in about equal measure," he says. For 40 years he's been drawing cartoons for books, magazines (including Mad) and other publications. Mice are a recurring theme. [The drawing here] is the illustration he added to the manuscript for this puzzle just for fun.

This is Pat's 91st crossword for The Times.

Sun 11/24/2019OPEN WIDE!
DANIELCRAIGTAKESHAPE
USEDVEHICLEUNENTERED
COLLEGEPREPTIEDYEING
AFLYELISHASPILLANE
IRKEDAMATIVE
JEALOUSYPRISONESCAPE
OUTINGCADGINGODOR
ABACISHORTOFETCHIN
DIRECTLINESILICONE
SEIBRANDNAMEPRODUCTS
TOOKTOTHESLOPES
SEVENYEARSINTIBETVAT
WEIRDESTDECORATIVE
ARNESSDESERETBELIE
RIGSCOALERSSLALOM
METAANALYSESSTHELENS
MIMESISCERES
SADFACESETALIIFLAP
ALERTEDTOAMAZONPRIME
ATLEISURERAREDISEASE
ROADSTEADSHOREPATROL

Frank Longo, of Hoboken, N.J., is a professional puzzlemaker and editor. He creates the weekly "Premier Crossword" for King Features Syndicate, as well as the Sunday "Spelling Bee" for [the Sunday New York Times] magazine. He is the author of more than 150 books of Sudoku puzzles.

Today's crossword is unthemed, which means the focus is on vocabulary that is as lively and colorful as possible, with no other constraint. To construct it, Frank started with the central Across stack, then built outward. The finished puzzle has 122 answers, the lowest number ever for a Sunday Times crossword.

Sun 11/17/2019REPORT CARD
TREADSPIRITSCHASES
CORSETTIMECOPRECOUP
MOTHERSUPERIORINCUBI
KEEPUPDENTISTONIT
ADIEUAGITATUDES
BREAKINGBADNEURONS
LEADGESDARTGUN
ALTARPARKINGFINEORE
SEAPOWERSNORISKFOBS
SETTYPEARTESMIDST
SCARBOROUGHFAIR
MATTEONEASLATETAG
CIAOJOCUNDBEAARTHUR
ADSBUCKPASSINGERODE
NETCOSTREOARIE
EROTICAWORKINGPOOR
MAGUSLOTSASIDER
ACREREBRANDERIEPA
SHELVEBATTINGAVERAGE
SEALINLIEINITEVADES
ESTADOENDNOTEETSEQ

Randolph Ross, of New York City, is a retired principal for high schools in Queens, Great Neck and Plainview, N.Y. Crosswords helped him get one of his jobs. He says his final interview with the Great Neck Board of Education was devoted mainly to crossword constructing rather than how to run a school. Having had one of his puzzles published in The Times shortly before "was good timing and made for a happy interview."

This is Randy's 50th Sunday crossword for the paper and his 113th Times puzzle overall.

Sun 11/10/2019DOUBLE SIXES
KTELRICCIDRUMSMUM
GRAILENRONVISITAPU
BASSIINNEEDDOODLEKEG
PEAKSSENIORALAKING
ADMELMGRAFDANDY
DOESSAABBOOKKEEPING
DONHOGRASSYSURCEASE
SRTASNARLATRIASTS
QUEENNOORROOMMATES
STPTATYUGOSLIRA
HEIDENLEAVEONCHENEY
RAREROLFEWHOKOS
ISAACCOOLLYYEEHAWS
METHARKSALVINHACK
PRESALESSILKENDELHI
SWIMMEETTEENNEEDLED
AKBARENOSYINTAD
MOONBOWSOBBERRIGHT
ADOENROLLEESSEEMMEEK
SATDEERESLAVSSERRA
SKYSANERTAUPENEST

Peter Gordon, of Great Neck, N.Y., is a professional puzzlemaker and editor. He oversees the puzzle-and-game program at Sterling Publishing. He also creates a challenging weekly online crossword ("Fireball"), available by subscription.

This is Peter's 116th puzzle for The Times, including the very first crossword (a Sunday) under my editorship in 1993.

Sun 11/3/2019ALL THE RIGHT MOVIES
STEWSTHESEIBISTICS
COCOAWOPATNEKOASHE
AROOMIEWITHAVIEWVAIN
MELDPRICYLEGHEALS
ESCAPEFROMNEWYORKIE
TODAIMATEARN
ASCAPAMICADANESEA
KIRIIDOLRAGINGBULLY
IRONYMANBRANDSNUKE
TEMGAMERACATMAIS
ANALOGYENHRHASTHMA
GOREBOAELECTSPAM
ETNARAINONJOHNWIKI
GOODYFELLASPOTSOLES
OWNARALCARBSTRESS
TRODAGAVEZAK
STRANGERSONATRAINEE
CHUBSETATTESTTALK
URISAHARDDAYSNIGHTIE
ZONEGALABRUTEAIMEE
ZESTEMMYASPERICEUP

Kristian House, of Oneonta, N.Y., is a former math teacher who now writes math content for textbooks and online platforms. He started constructing crosswords after watching the 2006 documentary "Wordplay." For this puzzle the first theme answer he thought of eventually became the puzzle's title instead.

This is Kristian's 18th crossword for The Times, and his first Sunday.

Sun 10/27/2019HOW SWEET IT IS!
WMDBARONMASSESWEAR
HOEOLINEULNARUHURU
OVENTIMERMMIIIGABON
PIPETTEDEMOCDLARIAT
PEDALSTINKGARTERS
ESOTERICCEDEREDO
REWCAROMSORTAANDUP
STNACTNOWISOPODRDA
OPEURALRENDEDY
KELPSLANAICRAZYEYED
ISEECANDYSTRIPEHERA
STARLINGSLAUDEHORSY
SAPINTODERNSOW
ETAFEELMEACCOSTMIA
SETHERAILSHAUNTACI
ISONLIENDISASTER
PILLARSKNEESMATCH
ENDIVEEYESUPETAGERE
ENOTEATWARRURALAREA
PIPERORATEEMILETAD
SEARSKEYEDEPEESOMS

Michael Paleos, of Oyster Bay, N.Y., is chief of staff at a major investment bank. He started solving crosswords at a young age, but only got hooked on them after discovering the archive of puzzles in the New York Times app. "After doing enough of them, I started wondering what it would take to make one, and down the rabbit hole I went."

This is Michael's second crossword for The Times, and his first Sunday.

POW Sun 10/20/2019BE PATIENT
AMMANBITES
CLAIRELAGAMECHE
SHALLOWDIPLOTINHATS
AIRBEDSEASELANTONIO
GAMERREARENDERSEDER
EPICPONDTEAMDONT
LESBLOOPIKNOWNNE
YTTRIUMOCCAMGRANGER
URNSORATESIRI
RATEDGCLIPARTBENICE
ERASIGHBODEMUSMEG
DAMPNOUNTHANSHAG
IGORGOTITFIENDPOSE
DORISDELIVEREDTIMED
NAVAJOELITEELATES
IVANITEAPLUMS
EVILOMENSMIAMIHEAT
BIGEYECAVEMANPLINTH
ECIGSKELETONKEYNERO
RAVEOPERATIONEMIR
TRESITSYEASTDYAN

Natan Last, 28, is a student at Columbia University studying for a master's in public policy. He has been a frequent crossword contributor to The Times since 2007 when he was 16.

For this puzzle's theme, Natan says, "I wrote a computer program to help me find words that [ ] once you [ ]." You'll know what goes in the blanks once you've finished it.

Sun 10/13/2019LINES OF WORK
BRADSMENORAHLOWPH
RARERIMANAGESALARY
SOFTBALLPLAYERURANIA
UNFITIOTAOOPSGMC
NCISMARYERMINESARI
GOATHERDSNOOZEPERON
UMSITSPECIALIST
ONAUTOACCRADUSTMEH
PALPSPULSARSPARKA
TAPSTADANICKWOMAN
SCHEDULINGCOORDINATOR
PALEROGRETOUTRHEA
BLANCSAMSUNGSTANK
HIEDELINURSERESIDE
ORTHODONTISTCAM
URBANSCOTIAMAGICIAN
SILTSEATACRACEONME
EGOPURRDORATUTUS
CACHEDEPIDEMIOLOGIST
ATKINSOTTOMANAGAME
TESTSFASTONEBORED

Erik Agard, 26, is a professional crossword constructor and editor, now working for Andrews McMeel Universal syndicate in Kansas City, Mo. His last Sunday puzzle was Stoner's Film Festival in June. He says the idea for this one came from rewatching "Black Panther" recently (referenced at 87-Across).

This is Erik's 17th crossword for The Times this year, and altogether his sixth one with a movie theme.

Sun 10/6/2019INITIAL PUBLIC OFFERINGS
WHIRODEBELASVASSAR
DOMEREXREACTIONTIME
SNAPABTALICEBTOKLAS
OGODTORNNURSESENT
ALOTOFRUDEREEDSNAS
HUNTERSTHOMPSONHST
ALEEAPERPITTOAST
BURDENEDGATBEARPAW
ACCARTHURCCLARKE
FASTAPPHYSICSLIED
GURUSIMOUPSCENTS
ATOMOVERTHERELEGO
SUSANBANTHONYSBA
PRETEENAHSSLOWRIDE
AIRESBROOWESAGES
SADSTEPHENADOUGLAS
BSASPURTOVUMMADEDO
EIREREARSESPYLOSS
GEORGEMCOHANGMCLIPS
ITSGREEKTOMEACELAIR
NEESONSHEARSALSSNS

Howard Barkin is a software quality-assurance specialist — and an ace crossword solver — from Hillsborough, N.J. He won the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament in 2016 and is a perennial top-10 finisher.

Victor Barocas, who also competes, is a professor of biomedical engineering at the University of Minnesota. The men became acquainted through the tournament when their last names appeared alphabetically adjacent in the results. The idea for this puzzle was Howard's. They worked back and forth by email to make it.

POW Sun 9/29/2019NOW WEIGHT JUST A SECOND
PUTTSSLEWWONTERGS
APRILEAVEAARONLEAP
SHIPOFTHEDESSERTFIDE
SIBETONOFABINGE
GLASSWORKNOBELMINDED
OLLIEEEKRITUALETE
DECOEELCTRLERR
THEMORALEOFTHESTORY
WHOSUDSPARESHOD
HERTREKSDENYISAY
ITSNOTROCKETTESCIENCE
MAYAFUNDSATANAHA
LISTBEDSRAJAPER
ICAMEISAWICONCURRED
ENOREDOEAUKNUT
ARMITALIANTHSEEME
SEMICOLOGNEDEATHSTAR
EPOCHLGAOARSHON
DONAMAJORTHOREAUFARE
USERALLOYURSAMINIS
PERECEOSESTSWREST

Tom McCoy is in his third year of a Ph.D. program in cognitive science at Johns Hopkins University. His area of research is computational linguistics — in particular, how to get computers to learn language as well as humans do.

He got the idea for this puzzle from an undergraduate linguistics class at Yale, remembering a remark by his professor about a certain rarity in English. Tom found just enough examples of it for a Sunday theme, then constructed the grid on his laptop during a long car ride.

Thu 9/26/2019
ISPSHARASSKAL
CYSTAZALEAIDA
BRSINTOPLAYNAB
METRICSUSSUDIO
THOROSTARR
APPARENTNOES
CREWORTHYOPE
ELALSARASURAL
DESPULLSSTRS
HULAMEATCASE
TWOSOMESNO
EROBRAGHDRHOOK
COTENGAGEMENTR
HUEADORERNEIL
STRLASERSSASE

This puzzle involved a real-life marriage proposal from Brendan McGrady to Amanda Yesnowitz. Amanda is an acclaimed lyricist, performer, English professor at NYU, and published NYT constructor.

She and Brendan competed at the 22nd Westchester Crossword Puzzle Tournament. The contest included Doug's crossword as the playoff puzzle conducted on the large boards. Since it was Amanda's idea to take part in the contest, she had no idea that Brendan was going to propose.

When the round was over, I explained the theme to everyone ... and announced that Doug had made the puzzle at the request of someone named Brendan.

At that point, Brendan walked to the front, expressed his feelings for Amanda in a beautiful way, and got down on one knee and proposed. She said yes!

Sun 9/22/2019ON THE UP AND UP
DROPCAPBALSAIGGY
ACREAGEBEMOANCOLAS
BASETANREMINDEWASTE
KAPPEARANCESIMMAD
TSOREALIGNTROLLINA
IONIALISAKISSEDANDM
SBENCHTERSEOATWES
ETUDEDURANRKO
PURSERRESINVIOLETS
PELTEVENSCREDOPOW
ESCREVERSEPHONELERA
ATEALITODRONEMEAT
TORNMCLSLOESENDASH
ASHBEAUSGRIEF
LESAPEITSMEPGIRLS
HIGHSPEEDDPISHEAVES
UNONOTSOSASSOONSIN
METOOSTRANSFORMER
PARROTIMPOSESARALEE
RIZZONESTEDENEMIES
POETGROSSDISPELS

Tracy Gray lives in Sparks, Md., near Baltimore, where she and her husband own and operate a lawn-and-landscaping business. She made her Times debut in 2010. Tracy always includes fresh, colorful vocabulary in her puzzles. Her last Sunday one, two years ago, is the only Times crossword ever to contain OVEN TIMER, RIVER THAMES, MALL OF AMERICA, MADAME TUSSAUD'S, QDOBA or LEFT AJAR.

This is her 27th puzzle for The Times.

Sun 9/15/2019GET YOUR MIND OUT OF THE GUTTER
TBSPNSFWARESALPO
HATEOHIOLUMPSAID
EZRATIERVEILANSE
TAILFINDRURYLIMPETS
OAKOMENAPESITECOS
PREMIEREWPAGODZILLA
ZESTWEDIDITECKO
MOTTOLENINCANSO
FINESSEPAGEDPILEUPS
ACERPAPALDUPESWRAY
MASERATISCITIFIELD
DARENOTSENTOUT
ALFNEROISETENNAMP
BURPSTEEPROADPLEA
CLAIREVSIGNSWILLS
SUMNERVEINIERTENETS
EYESANNOVOINKY
PARLEAPTOPARTCAP
IMAGELIFEWIIGMIAMI
NOTERTNUTACNEASTIN
TREESOGLEREGSDOSES

Andrew Kingsley is a 2019 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a master's degree in education. His thesis was on how ninth-grade boys learn to think about aspects of identity such as gender, class and race through literature. This month he began teaching middle and high school English at Riverdale Country School in the Bronx.

This is Andrew's 16th crossword for The Times, and his first Sunday.

Sun 9/8/2019WELL, WELL, WELL, IF IT ISN'T ...
ADVERBANGORASSUCHAS
BRIDESGRENADAARREST
BURYTHEHATCHETONESIE
ENGDATASURADAM
SKIDRNSHEARTBROKEN
SANEPATIOHURRAHAPP
TWASCRTNAISHDEA
SHORTSIGHTEDPOPINJAY
OOORENOYNEZAIRS
SNLASLEWNEAPSSYMS
WHATADISGRACE
FIBSWHIRSSALONCTN
IAGOLAPDWARDOHO
DRONEDONGROUNDNUTMEG
EMTTIDEDOCTPEER
DENAVOWALKESHASTIR
ROLLERSKATECOTSODA
ESTEBILHORAPDT
UTHANTFORTLAUDERDALE
RAISINITALICSSEEPED
ONNEXTTBTESTSTAMARA

Joe DiPietro, of Brooklyn, owns a bar called "one star" in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan. He's been contributing puzzles to The Times since 1995. He's sometimes confused with the Tony-winning playwright with the same name, but the two don't know each other.

This Joe writes: "I love the sweet pain of filling grids." He sometimes spends weeks working and reworking them — and the resulting quality shows.

Sun 9/1/2019THAT'S A TALL ORDER!
ASHARABOFFSKICAP
SIAMEDESLEDCHICAGO
PLINYTHEELDERRETUNES
COLORWSLOISBLT
ASSAYEDMICCHECKBEEB
HAECOMOROSLARVA
IMSNTSBREIBOOKREC
DATESUEKEEPSITREAL
CYANSPREPPOED
HITJOBSMOWLINTBARK
IGUANAAPPOLLSEYEDUP
POEMSALTWOODREADED
BASTAYATIMESNAFU
JAMELORELISMUT
JANEROESIPLIRRSLY
AMINOGENETICOAT
MASTGLUTENININTEGRA
PIEZOOMSEXCOMEDIES
ACTAEONJALISXICO
CATCAFELOONATADNUN
KNEELSOCTBANGGRE

Finn Vigeland graduated in May from the Harvard Graduate School of Design with a master's degree in urban planning. He now works as a transportation planner in Washington. Urban planning and crossword constructing evidence a dual interest in grids. Finn sold his first puzzle to The Times in 2010 when he was 18.

This will make 18 puzzles by him for the paper altogether, half of them Sundays.

Sun 8/25/2019"HOW'S TRICKS?"
AMIRMESASSWAMAFAR
RODEOOAKIEOHHIDRNO
ANYCOLDTIMEDEADCHEAT
BALANCESESSAYSHEESH
LAHRDEALSTARR
HURLANTIWELSHREADS
ATATIDALSWEARATDOE
WINCEMAKERSALUTTINE
KLEINNEMEAPAGECRANK
SEEPAGEMATHASARULE
HBOBAPTISMSID
SMELTERSIGNNEMESIS
SPARECRIBCHAROSAUDI
WIGSHODADCROWHOUSES
ARIMADEIRALAYONHAS
TEMPEESTERUDONOILY
OAREDASAPUSSR
IAMBICHOMEREDHARRIS
CRESTAREANOWYOUSEEME
AINTSULKASHENERNIE
NATSHEMSLEASTYOND

Matt Ginsberg is a computer scientist and co-founder of Connected Signals, a technology company in Eugene, Ore. He received his doctorate in mathematics at Oxford in 1980 at age 24.

In the puzzle world, Matt is noted for creating Dr. Fill, a computer program that solves crosswords using artificial intelligence. Unofficially, Dr. Fill finished 14th out of 742 contestants at this year's American Crossword Puzzle Tournament.

This is Matt's 49th puzzle for The Times.

POW Sun 8/18/2019REVOLUTIONARY
REGIFTSICHECKQURAN
ICESHEETTHESUNUSEBY
POTLATCHGOESFORASPIN
ELSEOTERIDEFCONSTY
NITUNSHORNKOTB
HOPSOOLALAKIRSCH
UBERSATMTENAMCAMEO
RABATELBATILLOVALS
NILLASLAPSTABSABLE
SLRRIOTPOLARINDUS
OCTOPIABOKAZOOS
BLASTMARIOABETIRE
VOLTAROMASONYSONIA
EXITSBRATENDSOMENS
GENOAGENESENSRISKY
ARGYLEADAGIOARTS
SETHCADBURYOPS
SAWSTAKEDRAIMISWAT
TURNTURNTURNTASMANIA
UTICASENATEEMERGENT
BOTOXHEALERINSERTS

David Steinberg sold his first crossword to The Times in 2011, when he was 14 and just finishing the eighth grade. A prolific contributor since then, he has had 94 crosswords in the paper altogether.

A 2019 graduate of Stanford University, studying psychology and computer science, David recently moved to Kansas City, Mo., to edit crosswords for Andrews McMeel Universal syndicate.

Sun 8/11/2019BIRD PLAY
POSTCHARSTSAAKA
EULERTAIWANHILARYSK
SCENEORGANAAMESIOWA
THEPLOTTHICKENSEATAT
PIANOTHEYSALON
OPENTOSPEDESSO
FARSIVERDISCOFFBIO
TACNEALEPOPULARKIDS
EVANGELIZEROBSIEGEL
NORALEGMAOTAIANDSO
PSSTGERMSPORN
VESPASHORTEOHMETDS
EXCITEELIOFFONALARK
SPREADEAGLERUNITKOI
TOYNEWTOSPOSEEMEND
NESTCAGEDAISES
PLEBSHEALSALSA
PROBEHEADLESSCHICKEN
COCOAMIXGATEAUVANDY
SWANDIVEATTENDELENA
SLYRECREEDSLEAD

Alex Eaton-Salners is an in-house attorney for Western Digital, a technology company headquartered in San Jose, Calif. When he's not creating crosswords, he enjoys escape rooms, reading and spending time in nature. He says the starting point for this puzzle was 84-Across, with the title coming shortly thereafter.

This is Alex's 21st crossword for The Times (not counting two diagramless puzzles) and his first Sunday.

Sun 8/4/2019CONSTANT CONSONANTS
HANGSCLEANSTEEPEST
CAGIERHOUSEORDNANCE
BRONTOSAURUSBUDDYCOP
GLUTSTRIOAREAONE
BETHLOISACRIDSPREE
MISQUOTESMOSQUITOES
UGLYAPTUPTOP
ARIOSILEAVEPREAMP
FRONTIERFURNITURESAL
IMAFANELDESTFORSALE
LOREAPUADOCUBA
MISREADFROLLOALINES
ERASCARFACESACRIFICE
DETACHASKTOHABITS
POESYIANAIME
OVERSELLSVERSAILLES
TWIXTTITHEASPSEXPO
REDPLODFREETAPIR
ASISEEITBRAINTEASERS
STOUTESTMOUNTSTEREO
HOTLANTAWINGSCASTS

Will Nediger, of London, Ontario, is a professional crossword constructor and writer of trivia questions. Since early May he has edited a free weekly online crossword for Spyscape, a spy museum in New York City.

Besides an unusual theme and a more wide-open construction than usual, this puzzle has some particularly fresh, imaginative cluing, including 40-Across, 100-Across (which made us smile) and 50-Down.

Sun 7/21/2019FIFTY YEARS ON
TSASCANTRANATMAT
RIPSAUDIOALERTMAUI
OTOHTRANQUILITYANTE
OSLOSAGUMSGILNOOB
PALEOTELEPATHSOUNCE
ETONOOSEASTINTRA
ROEEARAPARTEVEHAM
SPLASHARAMAICEGRETS
EDMUNDRBGYESIAM
NIVEACOOKIEJARADORE
PRELLARMSTRONGNIOBE
RENALANARIOTONIC
ISPENACTEDELS
IHADTODISABLEBEERME
MUDEELSPBSNBATEAM
ARMPOOLSGRASPIII
CLICFOODCHAINGNAT
THEEAGLEHASLANDED
ITSAGOIDLESSEAENEAS
NOTIONNOTATEDSTEELE
SMOMSNAPESSTRAP

Jason Mueller, of Lincoln, Mo., has degrees in physics, math and economics from the University of Missouri. He loves trivia and was captain of his college's quiz-bowl team. Nowadays he creates puzzles and works on his family's farm. Jeff Chen, of Seattle, is a writer and professional crossword constructor.

This is Jason's sixth crossword for The Times and Jeff's 100th.

Sun 7/14/2019ARE WE FINISHED?
RAPEAGERSCAMCACAO
APESAGAVEKALEATOLL
ISTHISABADTIMERLEMME
DEPOSITSDUMPSLIMBS
RENEETERAHIPPO
ABORTSWORKSFROMHOMER
DEJATHAIKRONOSENO
ELECTISLAMEWESHANG
PICKUPTHEPACERVALUE
TETLAMAPULPTHATSIT
CITADELORPHEUS
RIPOPENNEATORALODE
ETHOSWATCHYOURTONER
APOPEDAMLEERSSHIER
CRTSTEREOSETSGORE
TOOKTHEPLUNGERWARNED
BERETTOESSAVOR
SORERHELENCODEWORD
GIMMEFIVESECONDRULER
ORBITEDITVOCALPLAN
TESTSEELSADORESRO

Caitlin Reid, 35, is a stay-at-home mom with four young kids in Santa Ana, Calif. She says, "When I'm not herding cats, you can find me playing Chopin on the piano or dancing to the Beatles in my kitchen." The inspiration for this puzzle was 89-Across. Her favorite theme entry is the last one she thought of — 23-Across.

This is Caitlin's fourth crossword for The Times and her first Sunday.

Sun 7/7/2019HIDDEN TACTICS
TIDEPODTHERANGESPRAT
ICONCUROOZESOUTEROSE
KERATINKNIGHTTOBEIGHT
IBMSOREKNEESANNUAL
BLACKANSELSMEDICINE
AUNTIEEMVEXTESTY
RETOTALCHIPSAHOYHIS
DISHONOURANA
BRAVOSPERKUPMAKESIT
OATERMORNRESINPANIC
ADOREAKUTERESAHUMPH
RINDSTABLEDPTSENOTE
DUCATINSETSPYSWINOS
SENESCECHOPUPESTOPS
TSACHEROKEES
BTWNOSFERATUCOWBIRD
IRISHBICGOSSAMER
FANTASIACMAJORWHITE
OCTANEPROMINENTTIS
CHECKMATEINONECOLLARS
AERIEFREETOGOAMPUTEE
LASERLANDEDONABSCESS

Jack Reuter, 25, is a freelance app developer for Android devices in Montrose, N.Y. He says he likes crosswords that have an extra layer to them — which this unusual puzzle definitely does.

It is Jack's debut for The Times

Sun 6/30/2019FLIP 'PHONES
SEASLUGIDIDITONBASE
INDIANANICOLEPIANOS
KNEEHIGHHEINIEUVRAYS
HIESMOESANTLER
SORTAERRBADAREATOT
ALFSIREEGUNREAR
MOISTENTEATREETREATY
ANNONEISHNERDASSES
MPAACABADAMASHIEST
BOWTIETAEBOOATERS
ATEAMSRESULTSEATRAW
PRISSYBEEFYPHOEBE
OCARINAOATHOVIRAIL
COMICCTRLMORENOCDT
TOUCHYCHEETAHSTASHES
ELSEEARRONDAOSO
TSEMADISONESCTRIBE
NOHELPBAILTNUT
SCREAMLOAFERFURLOUGH
IGUANAESTEEMBEGUILE
PIEPANDELETESCATTER

Emily Carroll is a 2016 medical-school graduate now finishing her residency in New York City. She finds crossword constructing "a nice stress reliever in the little free time I have outside the hospital." This puzzle was initially intended for a weekday (15 x 15 squares), but when she couldn't make the theme work satisfactorily, she came up with more examples and expanded it into a 21 x 21.

This is Emily's seventh crossword for The Times and her first Sunday.

Sun 6/23/2019TAKE TWO
THETWITICBMTUNES
HANDHANDMORALOMENS
USDAORCSPLACEPLACE
GIOVANNIBEIGESCAPE
STRINGSTRINGSCOUT
SEASHOREPIRATING
MESERATALLNETDEO
AIMSPASMOLDAGEAERO
IDEATEDPERSONPERSON
WINNIPEGTROPEYUM
ASTORRATERATECISCO
RINBERRASAYHELLO
BANANABANANATORSION
IMOKGOESATSPINEDNA
GOVLAURELSTENHEE
SKIPANTSHEDGEHOG
THROBNATURENATURE
BIASACESITSMARTIES
CLASSCLASSATEMUTES
MATEOKARENBASEBASE
STERNPSSTELALREX

David Liben-Nowell is a professor of computer science at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn. Victor Barocas is a professor of biomedical engineering at the University of Minnesota. They met a few years ago at a crossword tournament at the St. Paul Public Library and have collaborated remotely ever since.

For this puzzle, they divided each part of the effort (theme, gridwork and cluing) evenly. They describe their process as "write, email, tweak, repeat."

Sun 6/16/2019NOT IN SO MANY WORDS
FATHERSDAYCOMPACTS
IPHONECASEINTERRUPT
SPEEDCHESSVENERATION
COBISOMETRICLOGONTO
ASIGNLOREALNEWSROOM
LETOPANTRYPHDSSURE
TRESSEDPALOMATON
SOPHISTDARERFISH
ELLIPTICYEAROFTHEPIG
ADITOCHOTRONHEARME
TISCHSUBSISTEDDRIPS
ASSHATROARSURFTOUT
CHEESESLICERPARTERRE
DARKSHEAFMOMMIES
ADUTRYSTSTABASCO
REPOOPUSATCOSTJOSH
INTHEREDSELENEFIVEO
ANIONICVICEVERSAERA
LIGHTSABEROEDIPUSREX
SHORTLINEFIREENGINE
THESLOTSFLYSWATTER

Joel Fagliano, 26, is the digital crossword editor of The New York Times and creator of the paper's daily Mini. Born and raised in Philadelphia, he often sneaks references to the city into his puzzles, such as 83-Down here.

This puzzle is unthemed, which means, without preset answers that constrain the fill, it has a more open pattern of fresher, livelier vocabulary — all clued with wit and a fitting level of challenge. According to our records, it ties for the fewest number of answers (124) ever to appear in a Sunday Times crossword.

Sun 6/9/2019DON'T QUOTE ME
MACHISMOOSMOSISGEDS
ABLATIONTORNADORAIN
FLYMYPRETTIESFLYERMA
IUDSTAYONPEESCLIP
AREASERRPECSHOOTS
BEAMMEUPSCOTTYFRA
SAMOANNIHIDIGIT
EVETESSLEAPSGEER
MOTTWICKEDWITCHDEBS
ICAHNERATSNOUTSYAW
NARCOSIROPATASTE
ADZBITMAPEASTLITHE
LOADCAPTAINKIRKLOTT
NOVASELMATOURKOI
SPYCAMMICREDEYE
TAOSERGEANTFRIDAY
ETUDEEARSIONDEISM
DEJAAPSOAPEXAMRPI
MRAZJUSTTHEFACTSMAAM
ANNEATEITUPNASCENCE
NOESMERCYMEENTITIES

Seth A. Abel is a lawyer based in Columbus, Ohio, who works in commercial and industrial real estate. He has been making crosswords since 2003, often with themes involving gags. He thought of this one in 2008 and kept tweaking it over the years — "which has to be a record for incubation time for me," he says. The title [DON'T QUOTE ME] was his starting point.

This is Seth's 13th crossword for The Times.

POW Sun 6/2/2019STONERS' FILM FESTIVAL
ALOFTATTNTVPGWAFTS
SOFIATAROHEROELLIE
PUFFPIECESAXEDBOONE
CITELATERONPOTSHOTS
ASHELMGAWKFRIAR
VERDEUTESALITMIA
HIGHDRAMASMOKEBOMB
ELROYGERMIHAVEEDIE
ELISLANDOMATESTENT
LEDSEISDUPLESCOLDS
JOINTRESOLUTION
CASABAEASESRUNTTCU
LLAMAKNITEMITSROOK
ALIAKENNYDOSEGUIDE
ROLLINGINTHEAISLES
ATMDISSAFROFLEES
ALISTPEAROLDTWA
BAKEDHAMCHICANACRIT
AVIANNOAHDIRECTHITS
MONDODOPEETTANIECE
ANGSTSTEMDYEDTASHA

Erik Agard, 25, is a professional puzzlemaker from Gaithersburg, Md. He mentors new crossword constructors from underrepresented groups, especially women and minorities, via a crossword puzzle collaboration page on Facebook.

This is his ninth Times crossword so far for 2019 — the most of any contributor.

Sun 5/26/2019BUZZ CUT
DIANACRABATHOSSTAB
EMBERRICECHASEHELL
JURYOFYOURPIERCEOLGA
ASAMOPREEDDATAPLAN
STARTDATESCRODMED
LEIATIETATIILRE
TWOPIECEINAPODTEENER
DENIMPLOBIEBRHODA
RIBMEATSCRAMALIG
HOWGRANNIERABBITS
ERAHISSANDHEARSECOO
PIRATESYUPPIESERN
COMOFIRESESPORTS
ALARMFUMEVOLOPART
TENTERDOWNONALLFORCE
DARAITSAUAEOMAN
OAFGIMMECANDYCANE
BRUCELEEORLEOHMNEE
ALSOCANTBELIEVEMYICE
MESSARTIEOGLEAMAHL
ANYARASPYWHIRNANOS

Ruth Bloomfield Margolin, of Westfield, N.J., began constructing crosswords after having an "I can do that!" reaction to a puzzle she solved. It took some time (and a couple of what she calls "polite rejections") before she got her first acceptance. This is now her 10th crossword for The Times.

In her non-puzzling life, Ruth serves on several community nonprofit boards and tutors in an adult literacy program.

Sun 5/19/2019HOOK-UPS
TBSCITYIMPSBOLAS
BRAHOBOEMOLEAPART
COOLEDDOWNSTORMSURGE
PAULSIMONCOLDFISSION
ARTMOOKBARESNLEAST
WHIRLTREYYEASTY
CROONLEGUPDESI
LARGETYPEMOIRASATIN
ASKSEDENAUGURTRULY
PHOPALEDGRUBMAINLY
USEMEELISEPANDA
DRIERSCROCSWIFTCOT
IONICTHERESAKISAMS
YEESHAUDITSTEAMPUNK
SANGRIOTSAEGIS
GROUPSTWINDENCH
SIOUANHEADSSPITWEB
AVOTRESANTEFOURALARM
BETAGAINSTCANNERYROW
LIEGEFOOLERICARES
ENDEDTIRELECHYES

Natan Last, 28, is a founding member of the International Rescue Committee's innovation lab and a researcher and advocate for refugee resettlement and humanitarian aid. A frequent contributor — he sold his first crossword to The Times when he was 16; this is his 29th for the paper — Last says this puzzle's theme germinated while watching people fish in Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn.

Sun 5/12/2019MEASURE FOR MEASURE
TONIWONTBAUMSTOLE
ATITMACROALSOHADAT
MINERALHARDNESSAVERS
POTLUCKSCOAXSOMEDAY
ASHENSHUNOCCUR
ESSTEMPERATURENATS
THEROADATALLNHL
SPOILERSISMBOOSTER
TARPINAALUMSTOPIT
ENOLCONNOBISSNAPUP
RSTUWINDSPEEDDADS
PIERCESERTAAAHEPOS
MCCOYSWEIRSUITART
RETHREWEATTINFOILS
TOETREESSECTION
ENDSEARTHQUAKESRAG
BASRAAUNTGETUP
IMPARTSFLAKTIAMARIA
BIERSONASLIDINGSCALE
ENEROFIVESERGEHITS
XENONFLAYTWEEDNYE

Victor Barocas is a professor of biomedical engineering at the University of Minnesota. He is married with two teenage children. He says that crossword constructing "reminds me of the research I do for my day job because I'm trying to do something that I don't know is possible. The constraints that my idea places on the puzzle may be too much. That uncertainty is somehow gratifying."

This puzzle, whose many circled letters appear in words across, down and diagonally (not easy to do!), must have been especially satisfying to create.

POW Sun 5/5/2019PAPER WORK
CARATALCOHOLSPRAWLS
EVITABEGUILETRAMWAY
LOTTERYTICKETREMAINS
SWANKESTHERWINELIST
WASURANUS
ANCHORBUILDINGPERMIT
MORANEMMAPTASHADE
BOARDINGPASSORGODOR
LDSOLEOSELANTRAELI
ELHILENERASABBA
RECORDDEALSHEETMUSIC
YUGODISHDVISPAR
CAMSIGHSATSWANSLGE
REBATRASEATINGCHART
ORALBERSEDENHOSEA
COLLEGEDIPLOMASOTHEN
DONATEMAO
CONTRACTTSKBELLYRUB
ONEIOTABREAKFASTMENU
TURTLERAIRLIFTICEIN
SPOOLEDSEABASSEASTS

Samuel A. Donaldson is a law professor, specializing in taxes and estates, at Georgia State University in Atlanta. Doug Peterson is a professional crossword constructor in Pasadena, Calif. They met at the 2008 American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, became friends and started making puzzles together — working back and forth by email. Doug attended Sam's wedding in 2012. They are prolific contributors both individually and with others.

Sun 4/28/2019WORDS OF INTRODUCTION
ALIASESTHRIVEABCB
NOTMUCHCHEATEDSHERA
KOHINOORDIAMONDLOYAL
AKINSWORSTIAMAROCK
RENONCAAOATSIVANKA
ARKHEARTANDSOULDEN
PASSKEYVANSYEARS
PLATTEEMIREASEL
SHIRESEMAILASWELLAS
HIKERSLAYSINFERDIA
ALESBELIEFINGODMOOT
MIACUEINENTERJOULE
UPSTARTSFETORFORBID
OOMPHORDOSLANTS
CARNERIDETOUCANS
AMERUNOUTOFTOWNTWO
TATTOOUNDOFIRSCRAB
ETHERNETFEELSWOOLS
REUELSETAFINEEXAMPLE
TUMMYPRETENDSORTIES
ORBSNONFEEEXPECTS

Brendan Emmett Quigley is a professional puzzlemaker in Brookline, Mass. He says he'll make puzzles for pretty much any market that will cut him a check — "not to mention a few others that still owe me money." Brendan sold his first crossword to The Times in 1996, when he was a senior at the University of New Hampshire.

This is his 183rd puzzle for the paper.

Sun 4/21/2019THE INSIDE STORY
SNORTPBANDJPRADOCDS
IEVERVOLAREHONORREP
THELITTLEMETERMAIDALI
ARRIBATSESLAPDENYIT
RUSSMADSIKESMARCO
THEPROSMINICARSONS
AHAWETWIPEANISETET
BOTHERINGRATGATSHAGS
CLEANSENONETSAKECUP
SADRSPOTROMECORTES
PICTUREINPICTURE
ASPISHPAIDHMOSIFAT
CHESTERNIHAOATLARGE
MOTTOUPSGETSCREAMOUT
EPIIBEAMISAIDNONAE
STARTEDWARSSTOPSAT
EPEESSNITSYMABLAB
MIRIAMSLOPMAPSTRINE
ESPDOCTORSWALLETRANGE
ALAUNPEGAORTASIDEST
DENPERPSWETONEPESTS

Grant Thackray (rhymes with "daiquiri") is 25 and lives in Portland, Ore. He lists his day jobs as writing pub trivia, designing T-shirts and house-managing live theater. To create this puzzle's theme, he spent countless hours poring over lists of (well, you'll see) to find combinations that worked.

This is Grant's fourth crossword for The Times.