A Puzzle by Porcia
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
A review by Prolixic follows.
Porcia has been steadily improving the accuracy of the clue and their surface readings but the resulting crossword is still highly complex. If highly experienced solvers are finding difficulty in completing the crossword, it is a sure sign that the cluing needs to be lightened. Whilst I don’t add marks for difficulty, it is a point to bear in mind.
The commentometer reads as 3/26 or 11.5%
7 A puzzle by Porcia containing the whole alphabet, not filled in (4)
MAZE – A two letter word for the setter (Porcia) includes (containing) AZ (the whole alphabet not filled in – omitting B to Y).
8 Novelist duo drop dead, in shock series of developments (10)
EVOLUTIONS – An anagram (in shock) of NOVELIST DUO after removing (drop) the abbreviation for dead.
10 Separate downloads, allowing scribbling in margins (7)
DOODLES – Split (separate) downloads into two words and use the abbreviation for down followed by another word for loads. An old chestnut but “d” is not recognised in the dictionaries as an abbreviation for down despite its use in crosswords. Editors may query its use.
11 Losers resorted to “Reveal Letter” (6)
LESSOR – An anagram (resorted) of LOSERS.
12 Come and torment me, shaking your yardstick (13)
COMMENTOMETER – An anagram (shaking) of COME TORMENT ME. Whilst just about OK in a Rookie corner crossword, this would not be acceptable outside of this forum as it is a portmanteau word used only in reviews of the crosswords.
14 Moral intelligence (7)
MESSAGE – Double defintion. The two meaning are probably too similar to make this a good double definition clue.
17 Green sleeveless top Jean briefly has on (7)
JEALOUS – A six letter word for a girl’s top without the first and last letters (sleeveless) after (has on) the JEAN from the clue with the last letter removed.
19 Sports equipment with significant initials made out on one side (8,5)
LACROSSE STICK – The abbreviation for left (one side) followed by a homophone (made out) of ACROSTIC (significant initials).
23 Click and check what you write in, in case of error (4,2)
SINK IN -A three letter word for writing fluid inside (in case of) a three letter word for an error.
24 Scientific studies: in other words, boring old written accounts (7)
OLOGIES – The abbreviation for id best (in other words) inside the abbreviation for old and a four letter word for written accounts.
25 More than once taking the same person to conventions (10)
AGREEMENTS – Double definition, the first being the grammatical correspondence between subject and verb, for example, but expressed in the plural (more than once) and the second being another word for conventions or treaties.
26 Hit “Revert” button (4)
BONK – Reverse (revert) a four letter word for a button or door handle.
1 Head for Slumberland and slip right out of pants to test beds (9)
SANDBOXES – The first letter (head of) Slumberland followed by the AND from the clue and a six letter word for underpants without the R (slip right out).
2 Referendum made void after concerning Foreign Office shake-up (6)
REFORM – The outer letters of referendum (made void) after the two letter Latin word meaning concerning and the abbreviation for the Foreign Office.
3 Dicky’s thrown up in bog and collapsed (4,2)
FELL IN – A three letter word meaning dicky or unwell is reversed (thrown up) inside a three letter word for a bog.
4 Bitchiest catwalk? (3,4)
DOG SHOW – Cryptic definition of where female canines (bitches) may be paraded.
5 Mark round window (5,3)
BULLSEYE – Double definition, the first a mark on a dartboard and the second type of small round window.
6 Put down, wrongly, I’m coming back with a soupçon of silky charm (8)
MISSPELL – Reverse (coming back) of the iM from the clue followed by the first letter (a soupçon) of silky and another for a charm.
9 12‘s workings coming apart from within (4)
NOON – The same word twice meaning working with a reversal of one (coming apart from within). Not sure that coming apart from within really gets you from ONON to NOON.
13 Dodgy ground, as Spooner’s doctor did something wrong (9)
QUICKSAND – A Spoonerism of QUACK SINNED with the internal vowel sounds exchanged. Spoonerisms should really be confined to the initial swapping of vocal sounds as allegedly perpetrated by Spooner, not inner vowel sounds or end of word sound even if they are (in some quarters but not all) loosely described as Spoonerisms.
15 Want cycles in barn chained up (8)
SHACKLED – A four letter word meaning want or dearth with the first letter moved to the end (cycles) inside a for letter word for a barn. I think that hut would have been better than barn which implies a much larger structure.
16 Chief blogger on i mostly entertaining (8)
GERONIMO – The answer is hidden (entertaining) in the second to fifth words of the clue.
18 Someone with lots of jobs to go to carried people making maps in the van (7)
OSBORNE – A five letter word meaning carried preceded by (in the van) the abbreviation for Ordnance Survey (people making maps). The definition here is too vague to be a fair definition for the solver.
20 Say I’m so deluded, thinking too much of myself? (6)
EGOISM – The two letter abbreviation for say followed by an anagram (deluded) of IM SO.
21 Terrible boy occasionally put away a pork pie (6)
TRILBY – The odd letters (occasionally) of the first two words of the clue. As the definition is a definition by example, this should be indicted with a question mark or similar indicator.
22 Ding-dong with uninhibited American for the Mexicans (4)
RING – How a Mexican might refer to an American without the first and last letters (uninhibited).