Where do I start learning?

by CJ
(Valenzuela, Philippines)

There is a ton of places to start learning about Scrabble- two letter words, Q without U, three letter words, common eight letter words, common seven letter words, and useful four letter words. So where do I start? It IS a lot.

Hi there CJ -- Yes, there IS a lot. One of the keys is deciding how good you want to be. Some top players spend many hours a week memorizing thousands of unusual seven and eight letter words, but that is not necessary if you just want to beat your family at home.

If you want a first step, I would say this: Learn EVERY two letter word. Do you think you could do that? Report back here when you are done, and I'll give you your next task ;-)

Hope that helps.

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Almost beaten him- but using them fine.
by: CJ

I still can't manage to beat Quackle, but at least I have been using the 2 letter words a lot, and have noticed that my score skyrocketed. I've also been experimenting with parallel words.

Hi CJ - I didn't mean to suggest that you might beat Quackle just yet! The idea is to simply practice spotting and using the twos. Playing Quackle is a bit like doing an exam - use it to test yourself on the thing you've been practicing.

BTW, do you have Zyzzyva installed on your computer yet? If not, now is a good time to get started. It is also free, and there is a link to it in the members area.

With Zyzzyva you can create and test yourself on word lists. What I recommend you do is create a list of all the hooks for two letter words and learn them.

You'll need to familiarize yourself with Zyzzyva first, though. Play around with it for a while, and then I'll give some suggestions.

Also, since you are in the Philippines, I imagine the dictionary you'll be playing to is the International Scrabble dictionary as opposed to the North American one? If so, the lexicon you need to set up in Zyzzyva is called CSW07. If you'd like to play to the North American dictionary, select OWL2.

Let me know how you go...


by: CJ

I have done it! I have good memorization skills, and I think it's natural. I was born with memorizing. What's next?

Hey CJ - Wow! That was fast. Good work.

Have you downloaded Quackle yet? That's the free computer Scrabble game I recommend (a link is in the members area). Once you've learnt a bunch of words it's worthwhile playing 20 or so games against Quackle to make sure you're finding and using those words effectively.

Check after each game whether you've missed any twos. When you're getting the two letter words perfectly, it's time to move on...

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