This post relates to the brilliant suggestion by KeyboardWielder on optionally creating wrap-up answers to solved puzzles. There is also a sandbox for examples now.

I believe one important thing for this idea is to have some standardization of the answer post, or at least some template header to be used. The purpose of this post is to suggest, discuss, and finally agree on such a template.

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    $\begingroup$ ^vote with a note: I was under the impression that we would discuss formats in the sandbox and revise them individually and incrementally as we converge collectively. Glad to approach this more deliberately here too. $\endgroup$ – humn Sep 9 '16 at 7:24
  • $\begingroup$ From the two examples in the sandbox so far, wrap-ups for different puzzles can focus on quite different aspects of puzzle construction, which a template should effortlessly accommodate. One wrap-up relates an inspiring sequence of creative leaps while the other wrap-up tells how a stumbling block turned into a pseudometapuzzle. $\endgroup$ – humn Sep 9 '16 at 7:36
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    $\begingroup$ @humn: I thought about this (first comment), and think the sandbox is good to discuss examples of wrap-up posts, but would become too mixed for posting suggestions of templates and discussiong these. Hence the separate but linked post. $\endgroup$ – BmyGuest Sep 9 '16 at 8:41
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    $\begingroup$ @humn Regarding 2nd comment: I think the template should only be aplicable for the header part. Mainly so that it can be easily recognized and searched for. (This sort of is a "meta tag" within the post then.) The "meat" of a wrap-up post can be very different, indeed. I simply have not had the time to come up with a suggestion yet. $\endgroup$ – BmyGuest Sep 9 '16 at 8:43

Note to the person using this template: Please click "edit" and copy the markup for this template. DO NOT copy the text directly from the web-formatted version of the template, or you will lose all the formatting, along with the guiding comments in the markup.
Feel free to add or remove sections from the template as appropriate; this is only a suggestion for how to format the post, but please keep the title and introductory text the same, so that people searching for this type of post have an easier time.
Delete this block from the template after pasting it into your post.

Wrap-up: The Making Of << puzzle title here >>

This is not a solution to the puzzle, but provides notes from its poser. This type of answer has been approved by the community.

Caution: This post may contain spoilers.


Creative steps

Logistical steps



Your thoughts/mental process


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    $\begingroup$ "Post-mortem"? Sounds as if the puzzle is "dead"; maybe write something like "A Cross-section of the Puzzle" or "The making of ..." or "Behind the Scenes..."? $\endgroup$ – Ankoganit Sep 9 '16 at 16:14
  • $\begingroup$ Good starting point, +1. How about an optional section "user interaction", which is meant to show the OPs thoughts/actions due to reception of the puzzle at SE? (i.e. necessity to fix loopholes etc.). Also, I'd consider making the last point "other" something more prominent. I think that quite a few wrap-up posts will maybe only contain that point. (And maybe the inspiration part.). $\endgroup$ – BmyGuest Sep 9 '16 at 17:54
  • $\begingroup$ @BmyGuest I added a couple more sections and renamed/expanded the "Other" section. Does this look better to you? $\endgroup$ – GentlePurpleRain Sep 9 '16 at 18:12
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    $\begingroup$ While I certainly support this idea of having a wrap-up-text, I am afraid the suggestions here look simply TL;DR... Also, writing up something coherently, in an educational and entertaining way is an entirely different story than coming up with a clever puzzle. $\endgroup$ – Matsmath Sep 9 '16 at 18:45
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    $\begingroup$ @Matsmath The template here is only meant to offer guidance; people would be free to include/exclude whatever they want. In fact, the original suggestion was only to have a template header, and let the rest be freeform. It may be that's what we end up with; up until now, no one else has posted an alternative. Poorly-written wrap-ups will be evaluated using votes. If someone writes something that isn't worth reading, it will likely get downvoted, or at least wont get upvoted. $\endgroup$ – GentlePurpleRain Sep 9 '16 at 18:57
  • $\begingroup$ @Matsmath If you take away the comment-text, then it really collapses to only a few section headers of which any poster chooses only the ones he likes. It is more about guiding the information the poster wants to write into an easy recognizable section - or leave it out. But I agree with GPR, it's the header which is the important part for the template. $\endgroup$ – BmyGuest Sep 10 '16 at 13:20

My thoughts:-

  • There isn't really a need for a "template" for the main content. Different puzzles call for different types of narration, and each poser can have their own style of presenting it. It's a good idea to have a list of suggested points to talk about, to help posers who - having posted a great puzzle - find themselves at a loss of words to describe it. But I think it would still be advisable not to treat these points as a "template".

  • When I initially made my suggestion, I felt that standardization of the header might be necessary, because answers that did not provide solutions might seem confusing. But after seeing the samples and learning that there have already been similar "wrap-ups", I realize that any unexpectedness will likely be a small phase that will pass as "wrap-ups" gradually become more frequent and a "normal" part of Puzzling.SE. There is scope for creativity in composing individual headings as well, so my opinion now is that there should only be guidelines for the heading, and a fixed standard description might not really be necessary.

In summary, I like the points that have been gathered in this meta-post as guidelines, but don't see the need to formally standardize or templatize any part of the "wrap-ups" / "commentaries".

  • $\begingroup$ Yay! I ran some experimental searches and found certain words that help distinguish wrap-up posts: wrap up making poser. Fewer words produced false matches. $\endgroup$ – humn Sep 17 '16 at 17:45
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    $\begingroup$ I'm wondering if it would be better to have a tag for puzzles with "wrap-ups"... $\endgroup$ – KeyboardWielder Sep 17 '16 at 17:49
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    $\begingroup$ I think a tag would re-kindle the whole meta-tag discussion. And meta-tags are evil. ;c) I am against starting this with tagging again. I agree, that we don't need a "strong formalized" header, but I still think a one-or-two line header of identical text (hence "template") would help things. @humn $\endgroup$ – BmyGuest Sep 17 '16 at 19:44

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