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Diabolically Arcane

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News Clues 15

11 July, 2013

Good news. Utopian news! I’ve just finished my new crossword escapade, a mystery tour across the century of the puzzle’s existence, from the New York World in 1913 to Araucaria’s remarkable cancer admission in 2013, and 99 stunning puzzles (their secrets, their marvels, their lore) in between.

Not the diagrams so much, as the stories behind them – from prisons, IKEA ads, TV, Egypt and China. From Nabokov and AA Milne. Scandals and flukes. You will encounter murder, love, propaganda, telepathy, aliens, funerals and births – each milestone captured by a crossword somewhere, somehow. The book – Cluetopia – will be out in late October.

And that’s why I’ve put the name in this batch of News Clues, to see who can find a better anagram than I COPULATE! No need for definitions here. But who can cook up some stylish wordplay for these 7 headline-grabbers?

  1. Cluetopia
  2. Simon Gerrans (Tour de France dynamo)
  3. Marion Bartoli
  4. Andy Murray
  5. Ashton Agar (19yo in the Australian XI)
  6. Dry July
  7. Edward Snowden

Over to you. What’s your clue?

Welcome to the new forum. Looks scary? It’s not. Feels iffy? It ain’t. The DisQus platform is here to block spam and lend us more chat options. That’s all. Please note, you don’t have to create a DisQus account to make a comment. If you do, however, it will speed your future visits. Be assured no details are abused, misused or reused. Let’s fight spam as one, and get back to the grand conversation. Thanks, DA

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Wordburger Awaits!

Welcome all puzzle-lovers, including any chompers of the Wordburger book or app. (Check them out if you enjoy words & trickery.) And if you still crave more alphabet mischief, click on the burger icon above for a fresh serve.



Packed with games, pickles, codes and cheesy puns, Wordburger is your chance to be a champion puzzler in 20 quick bites. Ideal for wordy kids keen to open a new language door, or grown-ups who want to cut their cryptic teeth. Click here. 

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Riddles in song, in code, in pictures. From Ireland & Wonderland, Einstein & Pompeii. Riddledom reveals 101 wry questions from 50+ languages & shares their secrets. A book to unlock culture via conundrum. Order here.

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Cluetopia roams the planet – and century – to find fresh crossword stories in 30+ languages. From shipwrecks to hoaxes, Cluetopia is a holiday for the head. Buy here.

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Recent Comments

Riddledom Rave

If you missed my riddle chat with Richard Fidler, then feel free to slurp the podcast at http://ab.co/1I9t1x5

Text-speak is creeping into Scrabble. Where do you sit?
OBVS I'm fine with it
Entrenched stuff - like LOL and OMG - but no more.
Words With Friends, maybe. Scrabble, no
Let the 'real' dictionaries decide first
Just the handy stuff, like FAQ and EUW
I mean, WTF?! No way
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