Crossword Fiend reading assignment: “The War on Fill”

Tyler Hinman has penned an essay called “The War on Fill” that has spurred a lively discussion over at his blog. I’m largely in agreement with Tyler: I don’t care for crosswords that achieve architectural feats but have clunky fill, nor for puzzles with dense, ambitious themes that require too many* compromises in the fill. I want the entire puzzle to engage me, not just the longest handful of answers. Click the link to read Tyler’s post, and don’t miss the back-and-forth in the comments.

(Comments closed here so as not to hijack the discussion from Tyler’s site.)

* Plenty of people go wild for quad stacks and crazy themes and have a higher tolerance for intersecting fill that’s uninspiring. (I wonder if those people have even taken their Scowl-o-Meters out of the box yet.)

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