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Not Your Typical Crossword Puzzle

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In partnership with a local crossword puzzle designer, The Citizen presents the first of hopefully many locally themed puzzles. By browsing through this month’s clues, you’ll note references to a number of local people, places, and things. This crossword has been specially designed with you, the reader, firmly in mind.

The puzzle was designed by Derek Bowman, a Winnipegger who specializes in writing custom puzzles. He made his first professional puzzle sale to The Manitoban, the University of Manitoba student newspaper, in 1999. Ten years later, following years of submissions and working at his craft, Bowman finally sold a puzzle to the most prestigious market of them all, The New York Times, with syndicates its puzzles to more than 300 publications around the world. In the years since, he’s had eight puzzles published by The New York Times and seven by The Los Angeles Times. He says there’s no end in sight, and he hopes to become an even more frequent contributor as time goes on.

A surprisingly lucrative sideline venture has turned out to be creating custom-made puzzles for everyday people looking to give them as unique gifts, such as for birthdays, anniversaries, or even engagements. All it takes is an interested party, a one-on-one meeting, and a bit of time. The result? A world-class puzzle with a theme so specific to an individual, so packed full of in-jokes, that an outsider might never be able to solve it.

Click here for this month's puzzle!

For more information

Interested in commissioning a custom-made crossword puzzle? You can reach Derek Bowman by email: derekxword@gmail.com

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