The Crossword Centre Clue-Writing Competition

CCCWC July competition voters’ comments
Clue no. 29: It's not very sane to be late with these immortal words.

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A clue to NEVER SAY DIE.
3 comments refer to this clue (from 2 competitors, 0 others)
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Here is the text

Comments on the clue become late = die. To be late = be dead. “Not” is not a valid anagrind. However, “Immortal words?” would’ve been brilliant alone as CD
2.‘It’s not’ doesn’t indicate an anagram
Comments on the competition
Very clever disguised anagrind in "New Year's Eve" in clues 5 and 36, getting 4 and 3 points respectively, the former edging ahead with the disguised def

Some entrants incorrectly claimed to have written &. Lit clues, and some of these weren't even semi-& Lit., so were fatally broken as clues. For an actual &. Lit that works and is excellent, see 22, which got 4 points from me

49, 37, 12 all good enough for points too, with nice anagramming. I also gave 7 clues merits!

Very clever disguised definition "Carry On Regardless" in clues 8, 9 and 43. I also noticed but did not use “Seven Year Itch” wordplay and am happy 43 successfully worked it in.

Lots of potentially great clues ruined by a mistake: flawed grammar, wrong indication syntax, poor choice of anagrind, clunky surface etc. Worst is when a clue looks superficially good, but has the wrong grammar — indicating the wrong part of speech (e.g. verb instead of noun) or wrong tense of a verb, which is very unfair to the solver.

29 has some flaws with the wordplay and indication, but their "immortal words" with a question mark would've made a brilliant cryptic definition by itself.

A few clues such as 25, 26, 28, 38, 48 defined the adjective "never-say-die" rather than "never say die" which I didn't penalise, since the solutions would have the same letters in the same squares in any potential grid.