My OTB "Post-Mortem" checklist
This weekend, January 24-26th, I will play in the annual LOTS XXVII OTB tourney in Asheville. After my first year of study through Chess.com and DHLC, I am looking forward to playing, but I am more excited about a strong post-mortem to prepare next year's event!
1) Make sure I have an accurate score sheet. I will endeavor to go over the game with my opponent striving to get an accurate move record. If my opponent lost the game, he/she will often resist the review. I will "beg" for their indulgence. If they won, they are usually more than happy to review. Hopefully, set up two small boards, one for my opponent from his perspective and one from my perspective, i.e., if my opponent is White, he/she will have a board from White's perspective.
During the review, I want to get the moves perfect, if one of us points out a move that deserves comment, discussion or debate, I will note it on the scoresheet and plan to return to that move after we have the scoresheet accuracy.
2) Conduct the post-mortem with my opponent. I will be seeking and prioritizing my opponent's perceptions, not mine, unless my opponent asks. Use questions like, if I played this, what might you have played?, what was your thoughts on this move? While seeking info, make notes of my thinking. Use the symbols found in Heisman's book, "...Improving Annotator". Sometimes, much stronger players participate in a post-mortem. While I intend to regard their input invaluable, I still want to tactfully prioritize my opponent's thoughts.
4) Convert my game to a pgn file. Back home, I look forward to putting my game and personal analysis in a pgn file. I would post this in my personal club's forum. I also will put this in ChessBase. I want to complete all 5 games in the week following the tourney. During this initial personal review, I intend to check my opening moves against my repertoire and against my opening expectations. By "expectations", I mean to look at the specific openings against the books, chessbase database, and other resources to see how I held against the opening moves and theories.
5) Put the games to an engine. Right now, all I have is Fritz 10 and Rybka 2.2. Fritz does a nice job of recommendations after every move. I am not sure how long that will take me to review and work through after getting the results.
6) Seek feedback. Print these games with notes and engine notes and submit to a local coach (Neal Harris, CM) requesting a "lesson". Provide these notes to on-line "coaches", highly rated players for feedback.
7) Outline the recommendations and organize for a one year study to prepare for next year's tourney! Bet I'll need a six to eight month or so lesson update.