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Member since May-19-08 · Last seen Oct-07-15
John Lennon said that life is what happens while you are busy making plans. My two new chess books are coming - they're just taking a little longer than I expected.

Naked Chess: How to Win
Naked Chess: Learn from the Champions

I have been given some fabulous help by a team of utterly brilliant beta readers. I now need to do that tedious editing and technical stuff.

More details to follow.



>> Click here to see Once's game collections. Full Member

   Once has kibitzed 5459 times to chessgames   [more...]
   Oct-06-15 R Hardarson vs S Briem, 1982 (replies)
Once: It's an instructive game to play through. White gives a masterclass in how to use rooks. Black gives a masterclass in how <not> to use rooks. The finish is fun with a rook sac to deflect the black queen away from the mate on c7.
   Oct-05-15 F Lequoy vs D Julliard, 1982 (replies)
Once: How many times have we seen a quick mate where the loser castles kingside but doesn't move his queenside bishop? And if the Bc1 doesn't get into the game, the Ra1 is probably going to be under-employed too. Move dem bishops. Let de rook breathe, breathe, breathe. It's not rocket ...
   Oct-04-15 S Makarichev vs Alburt, 1978 (replies)
Once: <stacase: I got the first three moves. How many moves ahead are we supposed to see ahead in order to proclaim to the world, "I got it!"> We've debated that question many times. Some folks think that we ought to see right to the end to claim a puzzle as solved. Others are happy ...
   Sep-29-15 J B Nielsen vs L B Hansen, 1982 (replies)
Once: A discovered check is a cannon primed with gunpowder and loaded with a cannonball. All the time that the discovered check is possible, both sides simply have to calculate the effect of firing the cannon. What happens if we fire? Then the question becomes "which bishop move?". And as ...
   Sep-28-15 S Shankland vs V Pechenkin, 2014 (replies)
Once: <Edmontonchessclub: I overheard Pechenkin say to Shankland, right after the game: "That's why I hate playing GMs. They never let me develop my pieces."> Nice quote. I'm not so sure about white not letting black develop his pieces though. Black does make a hell of a lot of minor ...
   Sep-27-15 Falcon vs Shredder, 2004 (replies)
Once: I stared at 23. Rh8+ as an ant might stare at a skyscraper. Coo! Ain't that a big one! I wonder what it does? Computer vs computer. On a Sunday. I admit it. I was intimidated.
   Sep-26-15 Topalov vs Ivanchuk, 1999 (replies)
Once: <agb2002) That's an interesting point. I always assume that puzzles work on the basis of castling being allowed unless it is clear that is impossible. Presumably CG has no easy way of saying whether castling is allowed or not so they avoid positions where it would be ambiguous? On a
   Sep-23-15 Judit Polgar vs Topalov, 2005 (replies)
Once: The King mobility seems to be the main factor here. Topalov allows his king to be kicked around in the opening, but then wins with a bold king march in the endgame. Interesting how Topalov uses a knight outpost on d4 to shield his king as he relocates from the queenside to the ...
   Sep-23-15 R Comstock vs T J Szczypka, 1982 (replies)
Once: This one will divide opinions, I think. It's easy if you see it. The black Ne5 is "pinned" against the mate threat of Qg7#. That means that Bc4 is playable when the Black queen is pinned along the adjacent diagonal of a2-g8. White wins a queen for a minor piece. So far so simple. But ...
   Sep-22-15 I D Dorfman vs Tseshkovsky, 1978 (replies)
Once: What vision! Very impressive. It is the sort of finish that should have both players chortling. Unique? I've never seen anything quite like it.
(replies) indicates a reply to the comment.

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Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <Once> Yes, <PhonyBenoni> has a point about combining a good pun with a good game. With that said, I want your opinion about a pun I submitted some time ago: "Adnoy Taken Out" for this game: L E Johannessen vs H Adnoy, 2001

As you can see, I've posted twice trying to sell it, with no luck :(

Does it fail because the game is not good enough? Or because most people don't know what an adnoid is?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Um ... if I'm being perfectly honest, that's a bit of a stretch. I'm not a medical expert, but I think they are called adenoids, not adnoids. So that's a fair way away from Adnoy.

The game itself? It seemed pretty level until black played 35. Qg7 leaving the c6 pawn en prise. As a general rule, folk don't like games which hang on a single blunder unless there is some other reason for the game to be noteworthy.

That pun may be a long shot, methinks.

But anyway, how are you? We've not "spoken" in a while.

Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: I like perfect honesty! I'm doing fine, very kind of you to ask! Reading between the lines, you sound like you are doing great...I hope so

I have to say your short stories have been just great lately, gems all the way around. Of course, these have always been superb.

I guess you play games with us when you disappear for a day or two, just long enough for us to realize how spoiled we are, then you return and all the good memories come flooding back

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Aw, that's kind!

Life is unbelievably hectic at the moment, which means that I don't get as much time for as I used to. There are all sorts of things happening at once (if you'll forgive the pun). New job, writing fiction, that sort of thing.

So it's not playing games - honest! I'm just trying to spread myself between dozens of things that I'm trying to do at the same time.

Premium Chessgames Member
  sevenseaman: Hello <Once>. Liked your powerful, well-worded (no wastages)comment in the POTD today.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: <Once: <Fusilli> Nicely played game! I salute you from over the pond.

Your opponent must have fallen off his chair when he played 29. h4 to "protect" his knight, but you captured it anyway.>

Thank you! He didn't expect the queen sac (should have played Bxf4 but the position is lost anyway) but reacted calmly.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <sevenseaman> Good to hear from you again! How have you been?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <Fusilli> I ran the game through Fritz who confirms that you were winning comfortably whatever he played. 28...Nf4 was an excellent move - really enjoyed that.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <Announcement!>

I'm making my first book "Love, Death and Tea" free on Kindle for the next five days - 17 September to 21 September 2014.

There is no chess in it - sorry! - but a lot of my trademark off the wall humour.

And it's free. Did I mention that?

Follow the link above for Love, Death and Tea.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Or get it from here:



Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: It's the last day of my free promotion for Love, Death and Tea.

So far I have had 240 downloads of the book, which I think is pretty good.

Sep-21-14  Shams: <Once><[L]ast day of my free promotion for Love, Death and Tea.>

I tried to get in on that action! Alas, UK only. 1776 was a long time ago; can we put an end to the spite at last??

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <Shams> Sorry!

It was available for free all round the world - but Amazon have this funny thing about only letting you buy it from your own regional version of their website. So people in the States have to use, the UK has to use and so on.

If you had clicked on the second of the links it should have taken you to the .com website where it was free. I had more than 100 downloads from the former colonies, so it should have worked.

But the link I gave in my profile was for only. So, my bad. I'll change the link.

You can buy it from, but I'm afraid the free promotion period is over. You're only allowed one five day free period in every three months.

I am thinking of dropping the price to 99 cents in a couple of weeks time when I bring out my third book.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: I have two new books out! Details in my profile.
Dec-19-14  alexrawlings: Hi <Once>, just wanted to let you know I really liked your comment on the POTD today. I love how you draw out the salient points using minimal and concise chess move annotations, and your use of diagrams.
Dec-19-14  alexrawlings: Also, I bought your puzzle book on amazon a while back and I love it! As on the website I generally can't get puzzles harder than a Friday difficulty level (maybe 1 in 3 I'll find the right initial move) but love your little stories.

I've recently (5 days ago) had a little girl (my first child!) and I hope I will one day impart my love of the game to her. I will most probably use your book at some point to see if I can stoke the fire in her!


Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Alex

Happy Christmas.

Congratulations on your new arrival! It's a wonderful experience to watch them grow. My boy is now 14 - leaving childhood behind and becoming a man. Those have been 14 magical years. I would not have swapped them for the world.

One thing I have found is that it is very hard to predict how they will develop. My boy knows how to play chess but he has no interest in the game. I tried a few times to interest him but it didn't stick. Science and computers are his thing.

I'm about to start a second chess book which might be more relevant for your girl. I'm aiming it at new players who know the moves but want to win more often. It will also have stories and jokes - a mixture of my serious posts (with diagrams) and my digressions.

I'll send you a copy when it's written.

Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: <Once> Merry Christmas!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: And a Happy Christmas to you too!
Premium Chessgames Member
  prn: Hi Will,

I have always enjoyed your comments and stories. I'll be happy to be a beta reader for your new boook. I don't see a way to contact you other than your profile page here, but you can contact me at Paul R Neubauer at gmail dot com (just remove the spaces and replace the obvious symbols)

Apr-13-15  Muztang: Good morning Sir!

A little disappointed to be second to say this, but I've been a fan for a while now, and would love to help out if I can.

My chess level is something around Fridayish. Sometimes I get both patient and lucky during the week-ends, but can't give myself much credit for those unexpected sparks of lucidity.

Using the same idea than the previous post, please drop me a mail at muztang 86 at gmail dot com if I can be one of your beta readers.

Have a beautiful day,

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: That's brilliant, thanks both! And what a clever way of writing an email address without the bots finding it.

I'm a couple of days away from finishing the books. I'll email to you them later this week.

Using your clever method, my email address is will@will-once dot com

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: I am giving away Global Domination for Beginners for absolutely nothing until 8 June. Click on one of the links in my profile or search your local Amazon.

Even if you don't read it, just downloading it adds to my sales figures and helps to publicise the book. And you never know you might like it.

Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: So far, so good. Katie is a prig and Robbie is a cipher. Lump is the character I care most about. But if they all grew up together, why is he the only one who speaks with a regional accent? (West Midlands is my guess.)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Excellent guess! The opening scenes are set in Worksop, Nottinghamshire - the Midlands town where I grew up.

The accent tends to vary according to education and class. The tough sons of miners tended to speak closer to the Yorkshire dialect, but the sons of bank managers generally wanted to head south and speak like Londoners.

I would be fascinated to hear how your thoughts on what happens next!

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