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Diabolically Arcane

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Any Which Way

3 April, 2012

The other day, making a MetroHead puzzle for the Friday gig guide, I was toying with compass points. The inspiration was the English boy band, One Direction, due to lob into a sea of manic tweens any day now.

Stuff one direction, I thought. Why not two? (Or three, if you’re very clever.) Take a fish like SNAPPER. If you change the N to W you make SWAPPER. So a two-direction clue could be: Fish trader (7,7). Just as a triple could be clued: Plain shed saloons (4,4,4) = BARE BARN BARS.

Instead of cryptic, this Storm awards the fusing two or three words into one neat unit, and coming up with a stylish or funny clue. And let’s keep the solving side too, where we get to crack each player’s creation. To that end, let’s number each post with your byline and clue number. Like:

DA1 – All-but perfect replica (5,5)

DA2 – Considers talcs (7,7)

DA3 – Mexican disappointment (7,7)

DA4 – Aquaphage? (5,5)

Feel free to get inventive, so long as you supply the right number break down, and keep the clues on the fair side of tricky. For example, Guru group plunging (4,4,8) = SAGE RING WAGERING. We may get tripped up by a backlog of unsolved ideas – so try to track your own clues in the wash. And by Thursday midnight, ensure your best DIY trio is filed for a podium dash.

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Rewording The Brain

Focus & memory, lateral leaps & logic - every aspect of cognitive health is lit in Rewording The Brain, a book revelling in how puzzles boost your brain. Part 2 equips your brain to conquer any twisty clue, plus the wild crossword finale. Pop science meets neural gameplay, Rewording is rewarding, and out now.


Rewording The Brain

Care to renew your noodle? Rewording The Brain explores the latest neural studies, seeing how puzzles (and twisty clues) boost your neurons. Part 2 helps you crack such clues, and prep the grey matter for the crossword showcase to finish. More here

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101 Weird Words (and 3 Fakes)

From Ambidextrous to Zugwang, this mini-dictionary teems with rare or alluring words, plus bonus riddles, puzzles and fun word-facts. Dictionary detective will also nab the collection's three fakes. Ideal for late primary schoolers, or word-nuts in general.

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Gargantuan Book of Words

Sneeze words. Fake pasta. Viking slang. Gargantuan is a jumbo jumble of puzzles & games, mazes & quizzes, tailor-made for that wordy wonderkid in your life. Or anyone in love with letters, secret codes, puns, rhymes, emoji & all things languagey. More 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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