Thanks, everyone for the comments, and I have taken them to heart as you can see below.
While the new layout actually yields more corn stalks, I may not benefit - the last time corn seeds were planted, the garden was meticulously cared for, and near the projected harvest date, I raced to the backyard after work every day to check the silk's color with basket in hand. Anyone who has had corn fresh off the stalk understands why I wanted to hover.
On Mother Nature's appointed day, I got home to find the garden decimated by squirrels. Those buggers had harvested almost 3/4 of what had been planted, and to my extreme annoyance only nibbled a quarter of what they left on the ground.
But what I did get makes this effort worth it.
Please feel free to comment on either the current, proposed layout, or critter control strategy.