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Word nerds unite: A crossword and language festival is hitting Melbourne

There's a word-based festival coming.

It's the one weekend when you don't need to be ashamed of correcting grammatical errors: NGV is hosting a three-day festival of live crossword solving, cryptic crossword work-shopping, spelling bees and word-game tournaments. 

There will be some pretty pro wordsmiths in attendance, as well as some established crossword creators, who make your favourite cryptics for a goddamn living. The Age's Liam Runnalls and The Big Issue's Chris Black and Siobhan Linde will be there to have their brains picked. 

If killer suspense and nail-biting excitement is more your bag, get along courtside for the Crossword Tournament first heat and the grand finale from 12.30pm.

The festival will conclude with an "Airing of Grievances" event, where all grammar grumbles and word worries will be aired and resolved by broadcaster and musician Casey Bennetto. 

Word Alert! is a free event and will be held at NGV International, 180 St Kilda Road, Melbourne 3006 from Friday March 16 to Sunday March 18. The full program can be found here.