Step 1. Stop playing
I have finally come to the conclusion that the best way for me to improve my play is to not play games but to actually study chess instead. (I know. big mystery revealed) Having been a diamond member for a few years now I haven't taken advantage of all that chess.com has given me for my money, although I have nibbled at everything a bit.
Here in lies the problem:
1) I like to play chess.
2)chess.com make playing chess easy.
So I play too much and study too little. How to get around this? I've decided to go low tech.
I've purchased a book and a very small pocket analysis board.
The book I've chosen is Jeremy Silman's "How to Reassess Your Chess" 3rd ed. I feel that the structure of the book is in harmony with my need for a comprehensive course that can overcome the slipshod nature of my relationship to the game, and it has delivered! By page 8 he has covered opposition and outflanking. With these two concepts alone, I feel that my money was well spent!
My plan in posting a blog is to have a record to myself of my progress, and to pass anything along the way (but don't listen to me that's how I got in this mess!) that might be helpful.
Next week, Opposition.