October's plan was relatively simple. I wanted to continue to learn the Taimanov Sicilian, and I wanted to analyze my own games.
I didn't work on the Sicilian at all. I did some minor opening tuneups but nothing major. Although I do want to become much stronger in the opening, I am starting to realize that improving the other areas of my game is more important and that by focusing on them openings will improve naturally.
As for analyzing my own games, that it something that I continue to do. I am not perfect about it, but I do analyze the vast majority of them, so it's at least a start. I want to get to a point where I can truly lose myself in the analysis of my games. To become so immersed in the variational possibilities that I can get ever closer to learning how to seek the truth of the position.
So all in all I would say that October was a semi-success as far as sticking to the plan, but a smashing success in terms of performance. I did set another all time peak rating by hitting 1786.
So far 2011 has been a relative success. I started the year rated just under 1700 and have increased my rating this year in a slow but steady arc. There haven't been many peaks or valleys, just a gradual increase. The good news is that this shows that my play is getting much more consistent.