Chris Derrick



Amateur puzzle constructer. Multiple NYT rejections. PDX.
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Sans Theme 5

· Published 2023-01-12T00:13:36.766Z

The NYT puzzles now frequently feature Gen Z slang, advocate less stodgy language, and make more current cultural references, so I am trying to fold that into more of my puzzles. I didn't start with an idea -- just a desire to work more current…

Sans Theme 4

· Published 2022-10-21T02:34:50.516Z

I like the rotational symmetry of 4D and 31D both being actors with 9-letter names. If you're a 'Gilmore Girls' fan, go back and look for 4D in a random episode in Season 4. I was not previously familiar with 41D so I hope the term isn't too esoteric…

Sans Theme 3

· Published 2022-08-10T23:10:46.872Z

This puzzle feels perfunctory to me when I look at it completed. I guess I was trying to make a typical Monday/Tuesday NYT puzzle. I think it came out okay, but a bit low-octane. I do like the clue for 1D because I rode this train a lot when I lived…

Presidential Wordplay

· Published 2022-07-27T22:26:32.857Z

34A came to me first when I was kicking around ideas about a themed puzzle. I would like to get better at making themed puzzles so I took that initial idea and listed out the presidents by name to look for more wordplay opportunities. Ideally I would…

Sans Theme 2

· Published 2022-07-21T18:43:44.709Z

This is a pretty straightforward themeless puzzle. I was happy to work in the music references in 37A and 61A. 36D is a great museum to visit if you ever find yourself near Beacon, NY. - CD

Sans Theme

· Published 2022-07-14T06:06:24.245Z

Just a plain old themeless puzzle. I worked in 25A and 63A as a nod to modern slang. I landed on 21A inadvertently, but as a Portland resident, I was happy to make the reference. 54D also made me laugh to myself -- I recently watched that movie again…

Twice as Nice

· Published 2022-07-13T02:59:46.610Z

The theme is fairly basic and I'm sure has been done in some version many times, but I think this a fun introduction to thematic quirks in puzzling. 27D is one of my all-time favorites, so I intentionally worked his name in there. - CD

NYC Neighborhood Wordplay

· Published 2022-06-29T05:57:03.600Z

20A came to me first, and I still like that answer, but now that the puzzle is complete I don't feel like the themed answers really hold up to scrutiny. This was an early puzzle for me and I'm not especially happy with it. I was glad to work in 40D

Pun and Games in the NFL

· Published 2022-06-28T22:28:45.220Z

I enjoy working sports themes and clues and would like to create more sports-centric puzzles. The thematic wordplay is a bit pedestrian, but I found it fun. I really hate 17A and 22D as answers but I got boxed in by the grid/theme. - CD

The Bronx Bombers

· Published 2022-06-28T21:13:58.749Z

Though I enjoyed working in 9D and I like the concept of the baseball reference, I don't think this a very good puzzle overall. The thematic nature is a bit erratic. - CD

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