|charade clues #5: setting exercise
||[Dec. 12th, 2006|01:40 am]
The art of the crossword
- you can use common abbreviations
- you can break a word into more than two pieces
- you can combine those pieces in multiple ways (A and B in C, for example)
- if you're having trouble with a definition, "for example" is always an option
Meatloaf didn't go far enough. One outta three ain't bad.
2) Could I get away with just 'tea' for T, and simplify it like that? Grease tea ... It's another very English clue, if it's got flavours of tea in it, but I could live with that.
3) Thanks. I'll think it over.
Could I get away with just 'tea' for T, and simplify it like that?
Not unless 't' is a standard abbreviation for 'tea'.
Genuine question here - why? Why does there need to be a canon?
It's in the interest of fairness to the solver. So the rules are roughly, if you use a word as fodder, use the actual word (no anagram-of-a-synonym, for instance), and if you use a word in the clue to stand for a word in the answer, it should be as near an exact synonym as possible (skipping over the whole 'class membership' range of possibilities for the moment).
This applies to abbreviations and contractions too - they count as "proper synonyms" if they are actual abbreviations in common use. Thus "second" for "S" works, or "doctor" for "DR", because they are accessible to the solver; "tea" for "T" doesn't because s/he has to guess that that's what you mean. The intent isn't so much to have a canon of crossword abbreviations (though it has tended to become that over time) as to use no abbreviation in a crossword that isn't part of standard English usage.
Aah, that makes it all clear. I had been thinking in terms of crosswords, rather than language. Thank you.