10 easy tips that will help you become a Crossword pro

What makes a person good at solving Crosswords? Knowing all the answers definitely does not, but certain tricks and tips definitely does. Whether you are a novice or mid-level at solving Crosswords, the following tips are for sure going to make you improve and become more efficient that what you are right now. Have a look!

  1. Take a closer look at the clues – they will always be in the same part of speech as will be the answer. Look out for the clues calling for the answers to end in ING, S, EST or ED. If you check the crossers for these answers, if or not the ending applies can be easily verified.
  2. The fill in the blank clues are the easiest of the lot to solve. You can spot them in clue list easily, so going through it first can help. Once you get a clue or two from them, it will get your ball rolling, thereby giving you a good start.
  3. You can use a pencil lightly for your guessed answers. If you are doing it online, you can put in answers and they can be removed later quite easily. Check crossing entries, and look for uncommon letters like K or J in the guessed words, and then check crossing entries for such letters first.
  4. When you look at the Crossword’s grid, look over for the clues for 3, 4 and 5 letter words. In English, there only a few acceptable words for this length and so many words tend to repeat in puzzles. Here, many crosswordese will crop up.
  5. Keep your mind open while approaching clues. For instance, ‘entrance’ will bring to your mind – gateway, door or opening. But don’t just settle for that. It could also mean to be filled with wonder or delight, that is, fascinate, spellbind, enrapture, etc. Always remember that in English, there are many words for the same meaning.
  6. The creators of crosswords do it in a way meant to challenge and confuse the player. Always think beyond. For example, a clue, “doctor’s number” could mean anesthetic. Get it?
  7. If in a clue you find a question make at the end, you can assume that it could very well be a word play. For example, bread box could mean ATM or eavesdropper could mean icicle!
  8. Understand that a single answer might be made of more than a word, which means that now; multiple worded answers are not uncommon. For instance, ‘mount’ could mean ‘go up’.
  9. If while solving a puzzle you are stuck somewhere, get up, take a few hours off and come back later to solve it if even if you felt like there’s no going forward from there. There always is!
  10. Last but not the least is taking the help of an encyclopedia, dictionary, the internet or an atlas. No seriously, this is not cheating. This in fact is the best part because you have come a long way from where you started. It’s always advisable to look something up. This is how mediocre quizzers become great solvers. One learns and then commits it to their memory. Start with memorizing crosswordese, followed by learning national and international state and country capitals. Be up to date with the names of the prominent lakes, seas, oceans, mountains, world currencies, continents, heritage sites, and the wonders of the world. All this remembering and memorizing is a good activity for your brain.

Final word – nothing beats experience. Put all these tips and solve as many crossword puzzles as you can, as that it the only way to master the game.