Within the spirit of the day, thanks to the editors and constructors who actively create area for illustration — each by way of whose puzzles get revealed and what individuals, locations, and components of language get featured in these puzzles. Thanks to the bloggers, commenters, and solvers who actively encourage dialogue round how we, as a crossword group, can proceed supporting the voices of the marginalized.
First, I wish to acknowledge that the two/10/22 NYT puzzle has an similar revealer to this one. My puzzle was submitted in 2020 and accepted in 2021, so I felt shaken up and disheartened to see such an analogous puzzle revealed, figuring out mine was to comply with. Now, I can respect every puzzle’s distinctive taste and perceive the editors’ option to run each. I hope sufficient time has handed, and people can nonetheless get pleasure from this one for what it’s.
This puzzle was difficult to make! The theme’s premise prevented me from utilizing the (very useful) letter “I” anyplace else within the grid exterior the themed entries. Additionally, the editors and I wished each dot within the puzzle to signify the precise phrase “DOT,” so many different potential themers like DO THE RIGHT THING had been off-limits.
Essentially the most difficult constraint to navigate was the way in which that every dot spelled the letters “D-O-T” going horizontally, however was basically a clean area going vertically. Lengthy story quick: after fixing the three/18/21 NYT puzzle, I requested its constructor Tom McCoy for steerage because it had an analogous use of “clean” squares. With out getting too nerdy, Tom was extremely supportive in serving to develop a Python script and customized phrase lists that made filling the grid quite a bit much less unattainable. Thanks, Tom.
Favourite clues that had been stored: CHAOS, IMAC, ELOPE, SYMBOLS, ALOE, PANGAEA, SUNS, TSO, BDAY, and EMO.