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Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon

Meet the wizards behind Word Games and The Atlantic Puzzler.

Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon are full-time freelance puzzle writers. This is not a profession they ever anticipated pursuing. When they were younger, they envisioned painting suspension bridges, playing trombone in Dixieland bands, and exploring the solar system's outer planets. However, in the mid-1970s, they realized their true calling and submitted to Fate with scarcely a whimper..

In September 1977, their first cryptic crosswords appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, a magazine for whom they still cheerfully toil. The Boston Globe has been publishing their American-style crossword puzzles on Sundays since 1980. They now contribute regularly to Dell Champion, George, and Roll Call (the newspaper for and about Congress). Other gigs have included puzzles for The Progressive, Runner's World, the Topps baseball-card company, and an X-Files fanzine.

Since March of 1995, Cox and Rathvon have been hosting a biweekly word-game contest for The Atlantic Monthly online at AOL. These contests involve anagrams, acronyms, puns, rhymes, and writing assignments with crazy constraints (e.g., short stories using only four-letter words and poems using only one vowel).

Emily and Henry live in Hershey, Pennsylvania, in the hills overlooking the chocolate factory and the avenue with the kiss-shaped streetlamps. To stimulate

Introduction to Word Games

Word Games rules

Enter the current Word Games contest .

Check results of the most recent contest

Archive of past Word Games

Join in the message board fun

Suggest a contest for your fellow wordplay lovers. If we can use or adapt your idea, we'll bestow upon you any book from The Atlantic Store.

their cortexes, they listen to dance music from Africa and the Caribbean. They like to eat spicy food. They own a small collection of Devonian fossils and a large collection of funny hats. Their idea of a religious experience is discovering that CHINESE RESTAURANT is an anagram of HUNAN CATERER'S SITE. They have coached local girls' softball teams through seasons of agony (3-17) and ecstasy (18-1). They would stop rooting for the Boston Red Sox if they could, but some curses are meant to last a lifetime.

They enjoy talking about music and puzzles.

Copyright © 1997 by The Atlantic Monthly Company. All rights reserved.