Another advantage of NaCroWriMo is that it's pulling stuff out of my drafts that I should have finished long ago. This is for sure in that category. Remember way back in July when Will posted his aleatory experiment, and then a bunch of us did the randomizer, and then some of us made puzzles off of it? (Brian 1 | Brian 2 | Richard | Trent | anyone else?) Well I did too, except I never got around to getting it into bloggable shape (until now).

For you, this will play like a regular themeless crossword - there's no meta, revealer, etc. The colors and circles mean nothing to the solve. The five yellow blocks were the first required by the randomizer. The blue indicates forced blocks - those that had to be added to maintain rotational symmetry and follow regular crossword grid rules. The circled squares are the letters and their placement forced by the randomizer. As you can see - it did not make this easy. When you see that entry at 18-Across, you'll know why Will said:

To see my entire construction process, click the Show button. Note: this will show you 11 letters of the completed grid. Please come back and read this after you solve! 

The five initial blocks, letters, and their placements forced by the randomizer:

After adding only the "forced" blocks required to adhere to traditional rotational symmetry and rules (so I was locked into those little snakies in the middle no matter what):

Next, I split the top and bottom rows. This ended up entirely dictated by what I could fit with a TQxx at 18-Across. There weren't many options, but LGTBQIA saved this whole puz. Putting a single block before the L locked in the top and bottom six rows. 
From there I spent a lot of time and had many false starts at getting a fillabile grid. I needed to: a) Add another set of fingers to bust up the too-tall columns at 1-2 and 25-26, and b) find a way to make the NW and SE (where there are no forced blocks or letters) as interesting as possible after coming into them last.  The J to the left and the constraining middle section was pretty hard to work around! Giving the snakies heads to break up cols 4 and 12 is what finally unlocked it and allowed me to come up with a fill that works and that I'm happy with. This is the final version in the applet below. 

Just for fun, here a version from before I added the snakey-heads that I ended up not using simply because I liked it less, mostly because of the too-high three count.

If you solve it, blog it, stream it, like it, love it, or find a typo, let me know! twitter | email | or comment below. Thanks! 

Fullscreen solve | (no puz this time; formatting)


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