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Joshua Kosman and Henri Picciotto — long-time solvers, editors, and constructors of cryptic crosswords — have joined together to form Out of Left Field.


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Word Salad $18.00 $16.00


Introductory price! Word Salad is the most comprehensive guide to cryptic crosswords ever published in the United States. The main part of the ebook consists of dozens of chapters on cryptic clueing, and includes hundreds of examples. Those chapters are preceded by a big-picture introduction, and followed by a tour of the cryptic scene in North America and the debates that liven it up. The intended audience ranges from the cryptic newbie to the seasoned constructor.

“Solving cryptic crosswords is one of the joys of my life, and I don’t know of any better or more entertaining introduction to the puzzle than this book.” — Will Shortz, crossword editor for the New York Times and public radio’s puzzlemaster

Buy the ebook


Puzzazz ebooks


If you like solving on your iPad or iPhone, you can buy five fully interactive puzzle ebooks of Kosman and Picciotto’s Nation cryptics from Puzzazz. Puzzazz features a fantastic solving interface, handwriting recognition, built-in hinting, and much more. (See note on puzzles below.)



Printed books


If you like solving on paper, you can buy printed books of Kosman and Picciotto’s Nation Cryptics from Cryptic All-Stars. These five 6"x9" lay-flat books are great for solving with your favorite pen or pencil. (See note on puzzles below.)



Patreon subscription


Get a weekly cryptic crossword with the inventive deviousness, humor, and quality themes that Kosman and Picciotto are known for! Puzzles are available in PDF format for paper solving and in .puz format for solving in Puzzazz and other apps.



Our website


Kosman and Picciotto’s home base features a quick introduction to cryptic crosswords, sample puzzles, and a FAQ for subscribers.

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Joshua Kosman

Joshua Kosman is the classical music critic for the San Francisco Chronicle.

  Henri Picciotto

Henri Picciotto is a math educator. Visit his Math Education Page, and his Puzzle Page, where he shares many variety cryptic crosswords.

Together, Joshua and Henri edited hundreds of cryptic crosswords for the National Puzzlers League's monthly magazine The Enigma from 1996 to 2011 (see a mini sample here). Some of the best among those puzzles are in the book National Puzzlers' League Cryptic Crosswords (Random House, November 2005), which is now available for free on the NPL web site.

From June 2011 to March 2020, Joshua and Henri co-constructed the cryptic crossword in The Nation magazine. Most of those puzzles are collected in their books and ebooks (all of them will be eventually).

NOTE: Puzzles in the Puzzazz ebooks overlap with books 1 and 2 of the printed books.

All items © Copyright 2021 by Joshua Kosman and Henri Picciotto. All Rights Reserved.

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