Puzzles, posts, news and general word-chat.

Diabolically Arcane

Bingo. You’ve reached David Astle dot com, a carnival of words, puzzles and more words. Welcome aboard, and have fun.

Loading tweet...

What Are The Odds?

11 June, 2013

Storm time, and this week we’re playing with the odd letters of the alphabet. Here they are for ready reference: ACEGIKMOQSUWY.

Amazingly, every vowel is enlisted, as well as that handy Y. Your challenge, dear dabbler, is to craft a word out of this letter bank, using them as often as you like, and craft a clue. CAGEY, for example, could be Candy pockets paper to be sly. Or SWISS could be Hole-some cheese?

Formula is up to you. Just like word choice, so long as you adhere to these 13 letters on offer. Please adopt an alias from the same odd letters, and declare your answer beside the clue, the better for players to see your villainy.

Come Thursday, between 1-6pm, declare your best TWO clues only in the forum. And then all players – on Friday before 5pm – will vote 5/4/3/2/1 via Email across the list, choosing their favourite five among the submissions. (Plus a bonus vote – worth 5 points – for what you consider to be the best word derived from the oddities.) And please, no self-voting!

No prizes, but plenty of WOW, GEE and MWAH-MWAH KISSES. If we can’t get even with the red-hot SK, then let’s get odd.

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

comments powered by Disqus

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. 

read more +


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.

read more +


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.

read more +

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
See Results