Crossword creating software
January 2, 2008 4:19 PM   Subscribe

What is the best software for creating crosswords, preferably ones that can be submitted to the New York Times, although I have no allusions here? Price and convenience, plus a good dictionary are concerns. It would also be great if this program is easily used by a ten year old. He is the driver, but I may want to use it myself a few times.
posted by caddis to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
When I wanted to make a crossword, I started with a blank grid so I could skip the "coming up with a grid" part of the project and so I could shove words in there by hand. To make the puzzle, I used this LaTeX package, but since the syntax was kind of verbose and I didn't feel like figuring out clue numbers by hand, I wrote a Ruby script to produce a marked-up LaTeX document from a plain-text grid and a list of clues. I suspect you are not looking for something this esoteric, but if you happen to be interested, shoot me an email and I'll send you the Ruby scripts and instructions.
posted by silby at 4:26 PM on January 2, 2008

Crossword Compiler. Without a doubt. This piece of software revolutionized the crossword-creation game. Its dictionary, autofill, and word-finding capabilities are amazing for constructing any sort of word puzzle.
posted by painquale at 4:44 PM on January 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

A friend once got into crossword making and after trying a bunch of different software solutions wound up using graph paper.
posted by rhizome at 5:02 PM on January 2, 2008

although I have no allusions here

I'm pretty sure you meant illusions. Which means that four across can't be "AGLOW".
posted by Deathalicious at 6:55 PM on January 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

I don't mean to snark, just a gentle correction. This might help you in a future puzzle ...
posted by intermod at 6:57 PM on January 2, 2008

What they said. Make sure to have your homophones straight if you plan to submit crossword puzzles for publication.

But thanks for asking this question -- I was wondering the same thing recently.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 10:06 PM on January 2, 2008

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