Thursday, July 26, 2018

"A Star Is Born," by Alex Eaton-Salners

Constructor's Comments

This puzzle has a unique vibe.  Themes like this usually involve something preceding/following single words in multiword theme entries.  Here, however, the targeted lexical units are prefixes:  [TELE]SCOPE, [HOLO]DECK, [PRO]LOGUE, [DIA]TRIBE, and [MONO]RAIL.  Despite being single words, I think they're pretty interesting and evocative (especially HOLODECK and MONORAIL).  Fortunately, I was also able to include some multiword phrases elsewhere in the fill, which makes the grid a bit more balanced.

Editor's Comments

I agree with Alex that the prefixes make for an interesting twist on the "words that can precede X" theme.  I also like how the reveal, PENTAGRAM, justifies that there are five theme entries.  Speaking of which, this puzzle's smooth and lively fill blew me away, since working around six theme-related entries is exceptionally hard to do!  THE EAGLES, OVERRATED, ADD TO CART, and DERRING-DO are all great, and I'm not seeing any clunkers in the short fill.  My favorite part about this puzzle, though, is Alex's super-clever "A Star Is Born" title!  Titling a puzzle that already has a reveal can be tricky, but he nailed it.

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