"...a Chessmaster should be a combination of a beast of prey and a monk."

Sunday, August 5, 2012


This is a new blog to track my progress with the hobby of chess.  My goal is to reach expert level, that is over 2000.

I want to keep a blog for various reasons.  One reason is that another interest of mine is writing, so combining these two seemed natural.  Another reason is that tracking progress seems like a way of keeping my spirit up for what's bound to be a long journey.  I also think it can be a good way of making sense of lessons I am in the progress of learning.  Lastly, I like history and keeping track of quests like this is something I know interests me from reading other improvement blogs.

I think it is very natural to seek improvement in our pursuits.  I think it's true that the most important aspect of a hobby is to have fun playing and not worry overly much about ratings.  On the other hand,  it's also important to learn and feel some sense of progress.

At this point, I do see chess as a hobby.  I like the idea of having something like this in my life that isn't necessary but at the same time doesn't feel like a waste of time precisely because there's progress.  I like learning and I like competitive mental games.  I'm drawn to games like chess and go because of their rich history as well as the fun of playing.  I don't think I have the talent to make it too serious.  I also have other interests that I wouldn't want chess to displace as well as a family life and of course the need to make money.

As far as expert level, it seems a natural goal in that it is a real challenge that can take a lot of time and effort to achieve (at this point I am thinking on the order of 20 years) but at the same time seems reachable for someone who is serious but not absolutely devoted to the game.

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