Sasha Chapin is a writer who has just published his first book, All the Wrong Moves, a Memoir about Chess, Love, and Ruining Everything. Sasha’s book tackles themes quite familiar to many chess enthusiasts: Chess love, chess addiction, chess improvement, the inevitable intersection of chess and real life, and how to grapple with one’s own chess limitations. Sasha’s book is a fun read which resonated with me, and features mentions of many prominent chess players and personalities. For another perspective on Sasha’s book, you can read the Washington Post’s review of his book here. For more details, timestamps, and relevant links please continue reading.
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0:00- We begin by discussing how Sasha was able to get a book deal with Doubleday to write a “chess memoir,” and how he approached writing the book once the project was a reality.
Mentioned: GM Vassily Ivanchuk, Gm Alexander Morozevich, IM John Bartholomew, GM Ben Finegold, GM Eric Hansen, GM Var Akobian, IM Eric Rosen, GM Peter Svidler, Video of GM Magnus Carlsen and Peter Svidler doing post-mortem analysis
17:33- We transition from talking about chess streamers and announcers to Sasha’s favorite chess books. Mentioned: My System by Aron Nimzowhich, Chess for Zebras by Jonathan Rowson
21:00- A Patreon supporter of Perpetual Chess asks what helped Sasha the most in terms of chess improvement. As Sasha tells it, his greatest improvements came from some key insights that GM Ben Finegold provided during their lessons. .
32:00- Another Patreon supporter asks how to prevent one’s ego from ruining one’s chess mood, and also asks for Sasha’s input about the pros and cons of playing live vs. online.
39:00- Does Sasha think that chess is inherently addictive?
43:00- We circle back to what Sasha’s chess routine was like during the time that this book takes place. Was he working at the time? What did he study? How many hours per day did study? Mentioned: Chess Tempo Tactics Trainer
48:00- Sasha discusses a bit of his impressions of some of the places that he visited while writing this book, including St. Louis, and Hyderabad, India.
54:00- We wrap by talking a bit about Sasha’s future plans. You can keep up with Sasha via Twitter, Instagram, or his email list
All the Wrong Moves is now available from Amazon and many other book sellers.
If you are in the Los Angeles area you can go see Sasha Chapin discuss his book on August 20. Details here.
If you would like to help support the podcast, you can do so here.