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Diabolically Arcane

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Taking Five

22 March, 2016

Four years back, I made a variety puzzle based on the phrase TAKE FIVE. Once you cracked that answer, the gimmick became clear, as every other clue required you to subtract its V.

WHATEVER, therefore, could be clued as:

Wild weather? Who cares? 

Or GODIVA might read:

Prime setter, perhaps, flipped to see nudist 

See the trick? Nominate a V-word, then ignore the V in your wordplay. Or perhaps choose a double V-word, like VERVE:

Poetic prior to dash

That's our challenge this week.  A vexatious week for yours truly, as I craft my customary puzzles & columns, as well as holding down the graveyard shift on ABC radio. Insomniacs and vampires are welcome to listen. The show is national, and the hours unholy, from 2am till 6. With those circadian rhythms in mind, please excuse the delayed stage-name results, and the sporadic blog visits, as I take five from regular diurnal duties. 

Vibrant verbal connivers - move!

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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)

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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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