First of all, my apologies to readers who have been stuck trying to access my blog lately. It's been slow or unavailable for most of the past day. Do you think there might be a little excitement down at TypePad HQ in San Francisco over all these problems on top of a very rocky beta rollout? Software, despite its name, is hard and you can bet there are swarms of engineers scurrying around trying to figure it all out. TypePad is a "pay for" service in a field of mostly free competitors so they've got to be feeling the pressure. Just coincidentally, plans are in place to do a complete redesign on this blog and move it to a whole new system sometime in the fall.
The crossword community is full of fascinating people. I got mail today from the author of yet another blog, this one called Star Tribune Crossword Corner. She writes every day about the Tribune Media Service puzzle which is widely syndicated throughout the U.S. (including here in the Seattle Times) and beyond. The author who calls herself C.C. grew up in Xi'An, China and only moved to the U.S. in 2001 when she was 30 years old. She says she has a passionate love for crosswords but finds them astonishingly daunting for non-English speakers. I would think so! She has a very successful blog, by the way. Her site meter shows she gets several times the number of visitors this site does.
If C.C.'s is the newest, the longest established permanent floating crossword blog on the Internet is Diary of a Crossword Fiend by Orange. C.C. conducted this charming interview with Amy Reynaldo providing some nice insight into both of them. Maybe she'll take on Rex next.
Update: What the L?
The Wednesday, June 18 puzzle (answers) is by Adam Fromm and it's a very accomplished puzzle. The theme is simple but it's fun and the fill is funky, flavorful, and frabjous. Speaking of F, I started right in at 1 Across, confidently scribbling in FLOP for Ishtar. Of course I was wrong, meaning I was disposed early to like this puzzle.
It seems Mr. Fromm is no puzzle amateur. He seem to be associated with Games magazine where he contributes puzzles and occasionally comments on The Unofficial Calculatrivia Discussion Place. Check it out. He loves math puzzles and word puzzles? My kind of guy.
This could be just coincidence, but I have a theory about Will Shortz. I think he likes to reward frequent puzzlers by repeating certain clues. We had Goya's Naked Maja fresh in our brains from last week and now we get to feel all smug and educated by immediately popping in the answer today.
If TypePad can settle down and behave, I'm turning this site over to Guest Bloggers for the next few days. I return to my very first guest SethG for the Thursday and Friday puzzles and then new guest Joon takes over for Saturday and Sunday. I'm already looking forward to reading what they have to say.