Being done with the Circles is weird....Drifting aimlessly...The honeymoon is over. I am somewhat planless, aimless. Plans for after the Circles that I had envisioned at the time don't appeal to me. Partly I just don't feel like working hard at chess right now like I did. Perhaps I need to follow my own advice and relax, not worry about it for a while. I don't want to burn out on chess. Luckily I'm not sick of chess, just sick of chess improvement. Or at least intense crazy chess improvement like the Circles.
I'm not as on fire in my games, likely because I am playing better players now that my rating is higher. Hopefully a chance to make new patterns of mistakes. Or it is because my tactical vision has dulled. My first 20 games after the Circles, I think I lost only one. I was just smokin'. Now my results are a bit more even.
I am working on visualization using Snyder's Unbeatable chess lessons for juniors. It is a very pleasant and helpful move-by-move annotated game collection with diagrams every four ply, give or take two. I cover up the next diagram, follow the moves from the previous, and visualize how the board should look. I then compare my vision to the actual board.
(Incidentally, there are few books with enough diagrams so I can follow along without a board like this. Any suggestions (the only other one I have that is good for following along without a board is Pandolfini's Russian Chess)? More than 8 ply and it starts to become useless, so any books with 6-8 ply per diagram is ideal.)
I have been doing PCT tactics and strategy modules to help me stay sharp and learn some strategy. It's like I got so comfortable doing computer puzzles doing the Circles, it feels like I'm selling my soul when I don't do it. So I go along doing them like a zombie.
I'd really like to get a coach again, but can't afford more than 20 bucks a lesson. Anyone know of any good ICC coaches that are in that range?
Where am I? Who am I? Is that a candy bar? Cool. I think I'll eat it. I think the advice to follow my own advice (link above) is very good. I'll eat that too. Maybe it's OK that I'm improving buffet style for now, just doing whatever the fuck I want, sometimes nothing. Usually a game or some such. That may be enough for now.