Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Last Tango In Stamford

As alluded to in our year-end wrapup (see sidebar for link), Will Shortz has sent out an e-mail to 2006 American Crossword Puzzle Tournament participants that confirms that this will likely be the final year for the tournament at the Stamford Marriott.

"After 30 years at the Stamford Marriott Hotel, the event is likely moving to a new and larger site in 2008," states Shortz in his mass e-mailing. Last year's tournament drew about 500 competitors,

In other tournament-related news, Shortz and ace constructor Merl Reagle help Oprah Winfrey kick off the February Sweeps on Thursday with an appearance on her talk show as part of an episode entitled "How'd They Do That?"

Friday, January 19, 2007

Rex Parker Did The New York Times Crossword...

...his blog is a lot of fun and here's what he thought about the Tuesday, January 16 puzzle.

Also, I don't know what the land speed record is for getting paid, but I found a $135 check in my mailbox two days after my puzzle ran. Thanks, NYT!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

We're Here!

We are pleased to soft-open our new domain, http://www.thepuzzlebrothers.com. It's all you've already come to know and maybe also love about The Puzzle Brothers.

The first thing I promise you is a much better picture of The Puzzle Brothers on our masthead. (We will get Tracy on it stat.)

You'll also notice that we're going to be featuring puzzles of our own design here. Please, please, please, do not distribute these puzzles. These puzzles are our creations, for some reason or another editors didn't want them, so you get them for free. We'll put a few up a month.

Robert has authored a little treatise on what we thought to be the best and worst in the puzzle world this year. Follow the link to your left to read it.

Tomorrow, Robert is going to be interviewed for a major New Jersey newspaper on being quite possibly the top solver from New Jersey these days. We'll definitely pass along word when it's published.

But for now, enjoy our new site, and our old blog, and please note we're still tweaking some design aspects of the site. We'll get it right yet.

Yours puzzlingly,
Bob and Dave Mackey

Times Has Come Today

Dave Mackey, that rakish Puzzle Brother guy, gets his third publication in the New York Times today. Have fun! (New York Times Premium Crosswords)

Monday, January 15, 2007

Merv Griffin Bringing New "Crosswords" To NATPE

How they'll resemble for-real crosswords is anyone's guess, but Merv Griffin's got some new ones up his 81-year-old sleeve.

Program Partners, the syndicator behind the recent success of anything with the name "DeGrassi" on it, has optioned "Let's Play Crosswords", based on a concept by the creator of "Wheel of Fortune" and "Jeopardy!", to this week's NATPE television programming convention in Las Vegas. We'll keep you posted on the success of this venture.

Crosswords and game shows have been blended before with varying success: some formats were hits, like "The Cross-Wits" (a celebrity-driven show featuring kriss-kross style puzzles, the more recent version of which boasted Merl Reagle as a writer) and "Scrabble" (which boasted some very clever crossword-style clues for its words), and some were flops (a 1960's pilot called "Crossword" which was hosted by perennial Groucho toady George Fenneman is as dull as dishwater).

Sunday, January 07, 2007

ACPT Registration Now Available

The registration forms are now available for the 30th Annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, to be held March 23-25 in Stamford, Connecticut. (The chances are mighty good you knew that already.) The Friday night games will feature a special "Time Capsule" contest with a $200 cash prize, a visit from a Norwegian crossword editor, and special Norwegian-style crosswords constructed (in English, thank goodness) by Frank Longo.

The Sunday luncheon awards presenter this year is Richard Maltby Jr., the Broadway composer and cryptic crossword constructor.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Site Expansion News

We are soon going to be moving to our own domain! We will soon be located at www.thepuzzlebrothers.com. Bookmark us now so you don't be caught by surprise one day when we've moved out, leaving old, half-completed Harle crossword books with cover illos by John Langton in our wake. We will be expanding to include more blog coverage as well as some of our own original puzzles for you to solve gratis! (That's free, y'know.) Robert is going to be working on an all-new site design which will incorporate our blog and the galleries of the tournaments and events we have already covered.

Look soon for our take on the year in puzzles, including the puzzles that grabbed us the most and the events that helped make 2006 a memorable one for crossword fans. And of course, with Stamford looming near, the Brothers (along with the lovely Tracy, who will be blogging and shooting pix) are getting ready for another trip to visit "the dysfunctional crossword family", as Merl Reagle so nicely put it.