If you prefer, you can create the word list files that you use to produce puzzles in EclipseCrossword in Microsoft Word.
Note: The instructions in this article are for Microsoft Word. Instructions for other word processing software will be similar, but there will be minor differences.
Word lists used in EclipseCrossword have to be a certain way; just any old document won't do. Each line in your document should have one word and one clue, separated by a colon ( : ). You can have as many words and corresponding clues as you want, but each word must have a clue. You can also add blank lines, spaces, and tabs as you see fit, and EclipseCrossword will ignore them. Here's an example:
CAT : feline
HAT : headgear
You don't have to write your word in all caps, because EclipseCrossword will capitalize your words for you. Once you've finished preparing your word list, you're ready to save it.
EclipseCrossword expects your word list files to be in plain text (.txt) format. Here's how to save your document as plain text.
Click the File menu and then Save As. (In Excel 2007, the File menu is the Office Button.)
In the Files of type list, choose Plain text.
Type a name for your word list and click Save.
You will see a dialog explaining that formatting will be lost, and giving you a variety of options for saving the file. Just click OK.
Tip: If you save your word list with .ewl on the end, it will get an EclipseCrossword word list icon, and when you double-click on it, EclipseCrossword will automatically start. For example, when saving the file, you can enter a filename like this, including the quotes:
You can now use this word list in EclipseCrossword just like a word list that you actually created in EclipseCrossword. (If you didn't save it with .ewl on the end as suggested in the tip above, it won't automatically open in EclipseCrossword when you double-click on it. Instead, you'll need to start EclipseCrossword first, and then open it from within EclipseCrossword.)
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Keywords: How can I get words and clues that I wrote in Word (DOC DOCX) into my crossword?