Last week’s theme guys were “men of letters” in the sense that they are best known by their first two initials. The long entries referenced, in order:
R.L. STINE (who wrote the “Goosebumps” books)
A.C. GREEN (a member of the “Showtime” Lakers)
J.R. EWING (Larry Hagman’s long-running character on “Dallas”)
B.B. KING (a master of the blues guitar)
G.E. SMITH (the SNL bandleader from ’85 to ’95)
H.G. WELLS (“The Invisible Man” author)
Then the grid contained entries that change one of those initials, like so:
The changed letters spell out ALBINO, which was the (somewhat forced) clue for 44-down, WHITE. That hints at well-known children’s author E.B. WHITE, your meta answer. (A couple solvers also mentioned T.H. WHITE, a guy I wasn’t familiar with who wrote “The Sword in the Stone” and its sequels.)
One quick note – I did not set out to exclude women from this puzzle. The title only came at the end when I realized that this was, unfortunately, an all-male affair. I may have missed someone but I simply didn’t find any well-known women who went by X.Y. Lastname that I could play this letter-substitution game with.
Up next is puzzle #69, “Do the Twist.”
The answer to the metapuzzle is a five-letter word. Submit your answer using the contact form by 11 pm Pacific Time on Monday, July 20. I’ll publish a new puzzle next Tuesday.