Jeff Chen regularly updates the XWord Info word lists, and he’s just published new lists with around 3,000 new scored words. (Words in the context of crosswords means “words or phrases,” of course.)
Whether you’re a long-time constructor or just starting out, you probably use computer assistance, and your construction software needs a good list. A scored word list helps you and your software prefer great entries, and avoid sketchy ones.
XWord Info has two word lists. The basic one called The XWord Info Word List (I know – genius!), has over 225,000 words and is available to anyone with an Angel Level account. It starts with every legit Shortz-Era entry and adds over 100,000 more. Many constructors have had success publishing puzzles based on just this list.
If that’s not enough, Jeff’s Personal List adds over 31,000 high-value words (scored at 60) that have never appeared in an NYT crossword.
Minor score tweaks and additions to the lists happen all the time but several times a year, Jeff goes through the notebook he always carries around and adds a large batch. We haven’t advertised when that happens; I’ll try to give a heads up when there’s a significant update.
Not sure if you have the latest? Check that CHOUXPASTRIES is on your list. (Jeff’s a huge fan of The Great British Baking Show.) If you don’t see it in your copy, you should download the latest.
If you’d like to learn more, our Word List FAQ page has all the gory details.