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This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  chameleon 1 month, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #635

    chameleon
    Participant

    This is the first crossword I’ve shared with people who aren’t friends or family, so I’d be grateful for any comments readers of the board can give. I’m interested to know how easy/difficult the puzzle as a whole is, as it’s obviously hard to judge that for yourself when you have the benefit of knowing all the answers…!

    I should say that in one of the clues I’ve used a current slang term which might be unfamiliar to some. Struggling to find an original clue for the word, I took the view that if 20th-century slang unfamiliar to those born in the 21st is fair game for use in a crossword, then the opposite should also apply.

    Thanks in advance for whatever comments anybody who looks at the crossword is able to offer,
    Chameleon

    Edit: There’s a slight error in the explanation of 17a, as I’m sure anybody who reads it will realise!

    • This topic was modified 2 months, 2 weeks ago by  chameleon.
    #644

    TheVoidTLMB
    Participant

    Hi Chameleon,
    I’m new here, but I saw you’d had no replies, so I thought I’d say hello. I’m not a fast solver, and I’ve only got a dozen clues so far. But I liked 5d & 19a.
    Anyway, just to let you know that at least someone’s having a go at yr puzzle!
    Cheers,
    Void

    #645

    Whynot
    Participant

    Hello, Chameleon. Actually I completed this puzzle some time ago and greatly enjoyed it but just haven’t found time to comment.

    I thought there were a lot of excellent clues with a good variety of types, some rather original.

    I got completely stuck at one point with four to go (12a, 13, 4d, 14d). Then, on returning after a break I got 14d and finally the rest. Perhaps the notes below explain why I had particular difficulty with those four.

    *** SPOILERS AHEAD ***

    In 8a, Ximeneans would insist that “over second” cannot mean ‘the second letter of “over”‘: it would have to be “over’s second”, so the clue might not be accepted by some editors.

    In 12a, I don’t think “crack” really defines ‘ass’, it’s just a feature of one. Also that’s an American spelling of the British ‘arse’, so perhaps that at least should have been indicated?

    In 13a, I don’t think an epic is necessarily ancient, so maybe another adjective would have been better?

    I didn’t get the second def in 17a, even though I thought of GO TO POT early. I did think of “near” possibly being a verb, but the sporting connotation didn’t click. Btw, did you mean to say “snooker” rather than “tennis” in your explanation?

    I loved ‘army fellow’ as a definition in 19a, although ‘dangerous’ is a slightly dubious anagram indicator.

    22a was a very clever device, not one I remember seeing before.

    I failed to parse 24a, though I guessed it from the def. I’m happy with your explanation.

    In 32a, I don’t think “figures” is right to describe ‘letters’. ‘Characters’ would have been better, and still works in the surface (not quite as smoothly).

    2d: I hadn’t heard the slang ‘pres’ but guessed it. Is that the word you were warning about in your presentation?

    I didn’t get the Cluedo ref in 4d. Tricky!

    I thought 6d was great, but I like anything a bit smutty.

    In 14d, ‘novels’ is a definition by example (prose is any writing that isn’t poetry), which should have been indicated. Lovely surface, though, which wouldn’t be harmed by the addition of ‘,perhaps?’, or even just a QM to indicate the DBE.

    18d Lovely &lit

    20d A beautiful cryptic def which took me ages to understand. Excellent pdm!

    21d Nice. I like “have another go at” as anagram indicator.

    23d Cryptically it’s fine, but I struggle to see a surface meaning.

    The small negatives mentioned were wholly overwhelmed by the general excellence of the puzzle. Thanks, Chameleon.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by  Whynot. Reason: Typos
    #647

    TheVoidTLMB
    Participant

    I got a few more, and guessed a few others without full parsing, since my last comment. Saw that WhyNot had commented, and looked up the rest. 18d is v nice. (I’d got my head stuck on “forwards”, doh.)
    Nice puzzle.

    #648

    chameleon
    Participant

    Hi Void and Whynot, many thanks for your kind words and feedback.

    I did mean tennis rather than snooker in the explanations PDF, yes! And “pres” (rhymes with cheese) is the slang term I warned about in my initial post. I did hesitate about “novels” as the definition for PROSE, but I justified it to myself because you often hear writers talking about the distinction between prose and poetry so I think in literary contexts it does have a more precise meaning than just “not-poetry” (when I was at uni I knew a lot of creative writing students who would identify themselves either as prose writers or poets) — but I suppose that more precise meaning still means short stories as well as prose, so still not as tight as would be ideal. In the end I chanced it for the sake of the smoother surface. Agree there’s not really much in the way of a surface at 23; I think I was imagining a pair of retiree holidaymakers who would be known as “the sunbathe sisters”!

    Glad that the crossword gave the two of you some enjoyment. Thanks again for your replies 🙂

    Chameleon

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