Fireball Contest January 31, 2024

Grid: untimed; Meta: 10 minutes 


Patrick Berry’s contest, “Headhunting” — Conrad’s writeup

This month, we are asked, What six-letter word is hinted at by this puzzle? There were six theme entries:

  • [Where buds grow up together]: [F]LOWER[B]ED
  • [Source of “Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing”]: [T]HE[R]AVEN
  • [Bathroom product with a round pink mascot]: [M]R[B]UBBLE
  • [Got out of jail]: [W]ENT[F]REE
  • [Not standing still]: [I]N[M]OTION
  • [Plato’s honorific for Sappho, with “the”]: [T]ENTH[M]USE
FB Contest Solution – 02.31.2024

FB Contest Solution – 02.31.2024

Each themer matched another clue once the first letter of each word was dropped:

  • SANK: [Decreased] -> LOWERED
  • EDEN: [Paradisiacal place] -> HEAVEN
  • ROUTE: [Chosen course] -> ENTREE
  • CLUE: [Notion] -> CLUE
  • HYPE: [Pump up] -> ENTHUSE

The first letters of the matching clues spell SEARCH, our contest answer. Another classic Patrick Berry meta, well constructed. Solvers: please share your thoughts.

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