The Year in Summation

At the end of every year, I look back at my progress and how that year went. 2012 was definitely not the kind of roaring success for me that 2011 was, but when I actually looked back at it, I don't think it was so bad. I started the year with a FIDE rating of 2565, and I finished with 2595(+7), so I gained 37 points. Not quite as good as the 67 I gained in 2011, but still a healthy gain that many a strong player would be satisfied with. I think part of the reason I was so disappointed is that I felt 2012 had started after my streak had ended. Indeed, just a week into the year, I had already gained 15 points from winning the Northern California International- this felt like it was just another one of my string of good results that came in 2011. If that result did count as 2011, then I would have gained 88 points in 2011 (an insane amount) and only 22 in 2012 (much more down to earth). But, this is more or less what happened. My session of analyzing my play from 2012 led me to believe that choosing every 12 months as a period of chess as opposed to how results are going is a pretty frivolous way of going about things. The assessment I came to ended up something like this:

January 2011-January 2012: Road to 2900

February 2012-June 2012: This is what happens when you get cocky

July 2012-August 2012: EUROPE!! 1 GAME PER DAY!! DOMINANT SHANKY!

September-October 2012: zzzzzzzzzzzz

November 2012: Darn it, back in America! So long 26, was nice having you while it lasted

December 2012: Hammertime! 26 again!


The picture painted here is much more realistic. While on the whole I enjoyed some very good results in 2012 and gained myself some rating, my biggest problem was my lack of consistency. I think I see the reason why, and this is something I will do a lot to change. In the more serious events, I scored very well. By more serious I mean longer, and if possible, one game per day. In events that were 9 rounds and more, I gained rating in every single event, made a GM norm in every single event, and netted a total of +57 FIDE points- certainly a substantial amount. However, the shorter, less serious events were very troublesome. I played very poorly, losing points in every single one. The lesson I have learned from this is to limit my short events, play them much less often, and in the rare circumstance that I do play them, make sure to try even harder to overcompensate. I'll be keeping this in mind very soon: in 2 days I leave for Brazil to make my debut for Team America in the Pan-American Team Championship. This tournament is a hybrid of the two types I have been describing: It is a very serious event, one game per day, and I am sure I will be playing some very good players, but it is also only 6 rounds. Hopefully I can use the lessons I learned from going over my 2012 results to make sure I don't embarass myself and my country. To conclude, I'll leave the readers with some of my best and most interesting games of the year to enjoy without comments.


  • 4 years ago

    NM Petrosianic

    why do you think you do worse in shorter events/time controls? [results consequent of experience/focus/chess style/motivation...]  thanks for the selection of your more interesting games.  good luck in getting your game against gelashvili as best uscl game of the year (jk). Innocent

    chess is a **** game.  or is it **** a game? Innocent

  • 4 years ago


    Don't you mean summary rather than summation?

  • 4 years ago

    NM Bab3s

    It seems that all you need to do is **** keep at it.

  • 4 years ago


    One thing you may have overlooked in you condemnation of your performance in the "shorter" events is that perhaps your abiity to bear down in the more "serious" events was due to your recognition of issues uncovered in the "lesser" events.  Perhaps you got the bugs and cobwebs out of your system there so you were fresh and ready to go elsewhere.  Reducing your time in those might end up transfering your "rust" to the bigger tournaments where the consequences would be much worse.  After all, weren't you ready to give up on chess and becoming a GM at one point before storming back later to grab that title by the throat?  Having a place to work out the kinks isn't always a bad thing to have.  You needn't throw the baby out with the bath water.  Or as they used to say in the sixties, "Keep the faith, baby!"  Or was that, "Keep the baby, Faith."  I don't know, the sixties are all a blur.  LOL.  Perhaps like 2012 for you?

  • 4 years ago


    why without comments tho ?

  • 4 years ago


    Good luck in 2013!

  • 4 years ago


    Loved your game against Kacheishvili, Giorgi.  How scary was it when he started attacking the kingside on move 18?  Congrats on winning that one.  Thanks for the article :)

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