The Friday NYT themeless is by a woman, and we don’t see many themeless crosswords made by women. To build the ranks of female themeless experts, Kameron Austin Collins has offered to mentor women interested in making themeless crosswords, and he has additional volunteer mentors lined up to handle the overflow. Details here.
Other news on the “why aren’t more women making crosswords?” front: Ben Tausig, American Values Club Crossword editor, reports that 40% of the applicants for the opening for a new AV Club constructor are female. You know why? Because his call for applications said “In the interest of equal representation and also of producing a more welcoming vibe in the universe of publishing/intellectual life, we strongly encourage submissions from women and/or people of color.” One wonders what would happen if the various newspaper crossword editors specifically encouraged submissions from women.
Kameron and Ben are terrific feminists (and/or feminist allies), and I think they’re both the bee’s knees.