Crossworld News and Notes, 6 February 2022
Tournament announcements, new puzzle content, and more
Congratulations to Will Nediger, winner of the 2022 Boswords Winter Wondersolve, and to second- and third- place contestants Tyler Hinman and Andy Kravis. Winter Wondersolve puzzle packs, videos, and full standings are available at boswords.org.
Congratulations to Will Nediger, whose puzzle was chosen from the open submissions to join the constructor lineup for the 2022 Boswords Spring Themeless League. The preseason begins February 28, and registration opens February 12.
Since the last News & Notes, Ellen Brunsberg (1/25), Ray Brunsberg (1/25), and Meredith Colton Hazy (2/2) made their NYT debuts. Congrats to everyone!
New York Magazine and Vulture have expanded their games offerings with a new 10x10 daily crossword. Puzzles are constructed by Malaika Handa and Stella Zawistowski and edited by Vulture’s Emily Palmer Heller. Matt Gaffney’s 21x puzzles will now run weekly — previously new puzzles alternated with puzzles from the archives. Solve online, and/or sign up for email notification of new puzzles.
In other midi news, congratulations to the constructors chosen for the 2022 Lil AVC X squad: Adrian Johnson, Kelsey Dixon, Kunal Nabar, Madeline Kaplan, May Huang, Rafael Musa, and Shannon Rapp, with puzzles edited by Enrique Henestroza Anguiano, Brooke Husic, and Chris Piuma. AVCX subscribers will begin receiving expansion content - two midis, one 15x, one cryptic, and one trivia feature three weeks each month - beginning February 14. Subscribe or sign up for a free one-month trial.
These Puzzles Fund Abortion Too, due for release March 1, is a pack of fifteen crosswords with reproductive and social justice content from an all-star team of constructors and editors to raise funds for the 2022 National Abortion Access Fund-A-Thon, building on a similar pack from last year. Donation page and more info to come.
LEO has added a cryptic crossword to their puzzle lineup, beginning with this one by Trip Payne. We’re hopeful that it will become a monthly or even biweekly staple there.
The New York Times Diverse Crossword Constructor Fellowship will begin accepting applications this week on February 7. This program is open to constructors from underrepresented groups including women, people of color and the L.G.B.T.Q. community who have not yet been published in The New York Times.
Crossword Nexus and Kotwords have released yet another fun tool, this time for constructing spiral puzzles. Read more about it, and get started using it here. We enjoyed the first spiral puzzle from Nexus, Follow The Yellow Brick Road by Alex Boisvert.
A bit of a round-up from our favorite puzzle-related blogs and newsletters:
Aaron Riccio writes daily-ish at The Crossword Scholar, taking a deep dive into a favorite clue or two from mainstream and indies alike.
Malaika Handa has officially joined the team at Rex Parker, reviewing the first Wednesday New York Times crossword each month. We enjoyed her fun take on the February 2 puzzle and look forward to reading more.
Rachel Fabi recently wrote her 100th review for Wordplay at The New York Times. We’ve really enjoyed the addition of her voice and the expansion in content over at Wordplay.
No blog round-up would be complete without mentioning Sally’s Take on the USA Today Crossword by Sally Hoelscher. Sally’s blogging voice is particularly suited for the USA Today puzzles (where I always learn something new) with a “Things I Learned” section, and lengthier musings on individual entries than typically seen at Diary of a Crossword Fiend.