A man who wrote crossword puzzles for The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal explains what his job entails

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trip payne

Trip Payne

Trip Payne.

Clue: Three time champion of the American Crossword Tournament; former puzzle writer for The New York Times, The New Yorker, and the Wall Street Journal.

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Answer: Trip Payne. Payne, who is currently a staff writer for PuzzleSocial's Daily Celebrity Crossword, has been a full-time puzzlemaker since 1990.

"When I was young, I was very interested in puzzles and games," says Payne, who was featured in the 2006 award-winning documentary "Wordplay." "I thought it would be interesting to try to make up my own puzzles, and when I was 14 years old I had a crossword published in Games Magazine. Over time, that hobby became my career," he tells Business Insider.

We recently spoke to Payne about what his job entails. Here's what he had to say: