A few new thingsby David Tossman
From crossword 751 onwards the puzzles will be in 15 x 15 grids, up from the 13 x 13 grids used to date. The 15 x 15 size is used in most cryptic puzzles worldwide.
The smaller grid has proved ever more limiting over the years, since a well-connected grid of that size necessitates a large proportion of three- and four-letter words, and there are simply not that many in the language. The Oxford Crossword Dictionary, for example, lists 3735 four-letter words and 20,874 seven-letter words.
Since I have written more than 20,000 clues for the Listener crosswords over the past 15 or so years, it is hardly surprising that I have been running out of fresh ones and have looked enviously at the larger grids available to other setters.
I look forward to fresh challenges and hope my loyal solvers do likewise.
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