I have decided to start this blog about my journey towards becoming a chess master in hopes that it will help me focus my efforts.
Hopefully it will entertain others along the way.
One of the main reasons I want to start this blogs mimics one of the main reasons that a good coach will tell you to keep a notebook...it becomes a written record of what has come before, which can then be used to assist in determining what should come next.
I want that to refer to so that when I hit plateaus along the way I can hopefully break through them much faster.
As an example, I first made it over 1700 in October of 2011 at the Hales Corners Challenge XIV. I then dropped back below 1700 in my next tournament, made it back over 1700 in January of 2012. I then went into a tail spin back down to 1560 by August of 2012.
There were two things that broke that streak and got me back on track. The first was in playing with more confidence against lower rated players. I decided that they were lower rated for a reason and so I should be OK as long as I focused.
The second was going back over the notes I had taken along the way and reinforcing those lessons within myself.
I hope that this will make my referring back a much easier experience.
So what happened when I did those two things? Well, from August of 2012 through January of 2013 I raised my rating from 1560 back up to 1710.