Saturday, November 3, 2018

"Free for All XXXVI," by Christopher Adams

Constructor's Comments

It shouldn't be any surprise that the seed entry for this one was SAME SEX MARRIAGE, but the rest of the grid took awhile to come together before I found the stack in the NW.  I originally only had ELENA in the grid, partially because I was more focused on finding a good stack to start.  But when I started focusing on the rest of the grid, I didn't have to think twice to go with the full name, and I'm very glad that it fit perfectly.  The rest of the grid came together nicely, and I'm somewhat proud of the BRANDYWINE/HARD CIDER overlap, even though (or, perhaps, especially because) they're not related at all.

The original grid did have an extra pair of black squares (at the I in SETI and W in WAND), which led to an overabundance of short fill outside the two main stacks, as well as perhaps a few too many Scrabbly letters.  But David's suggestion to knock out those squares resulted in better fill overall and some good long downs to boot.  He also suggested CREME EGG for 4-Down, a vast improvement over my original CREMATES; it's things like this that make me glad to work with David and very appreciative of the work he does.

Otherwise, as always, I hope you enjoyed this puzzle; if you want to get in touch, or just solve more puzzles, here's my site.

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