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Diabolically Arcane

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Salon 27

11 August, 2014

“Exclamation marks give me piles; I must be inserting them the wrong way.” One among many zingers delivered at the grammar slamdown at the Bendigo Writers' Fest last weekend, this gag courtesy of street artist, Matt Blackwood.

A great weekend, with banter and boutique wine in equal measure, where sleep was the only loser! Writers to chase down: crime maestro Michael Robotham, science man John Pickerel, Sonya Hartnett’s new Children of the King, and Into the Silent Land by Paul Broks (about brain mysteries.)

While for those readers who loved The Perfect Storm, then a perfect alternative is called Blind Descent by James Tabor. A third in now, and loving this wild adventure yarn about exploring supercaves in southern Mexico.

Thanks too for all those kind words re the Times Ton. I skipped the Weekend Oz just been, which says I’m back to my desultory diet. Though I am keen to brag a G-week this week: 6 puzzles straight. Let’s see how we fare.

As for that difficult Friday folly, the Shark-Shear-Ark, here are the same six audio-celebs in randomised order: throat, know, ridge, yet, amble, honour, brew, jaw, keno, veiny, gnome, cheapen, meek, chair, chorus, jelly, hull, smacker. Good luck with that farrago.

And the week, a wordy one I hope.

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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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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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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