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Member since May-19-08 · Last seen Apr-23-14
It's an exciting time. I have just published a collection of my chess stories as an e-book on kindle.

It's called "Once upon a chess game" (naturally). It has 40 puzzles and 40 stories drawn from our very own puzzle of the day.

More details here:

At the time of writing (20 October 2013), it's only available in Kindle format. The plan is to bring it out in other formats shortly. There is a kindle app for most devices anyway.

It's priced at $5 / 3.22.

I also have a comic novel available as an e-book. This one is called "Love, Death and Tea". There is no chess in it (sorry about that) but as compensation there is the world's friendliest zombie, the end of civilization as we know it, revolution, a timeless love story and more than one William Wallace.

You can find it here ...

Project #3 is coming soon. A James Bond spoof where the bad guy is the hero. I thought of calling it "A View from a Volcano", but settled for "Global Domination: a Beginner's Guide." That will be published later this year.

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

   Once has kibitzed 4888 times to chessgames   [more...]
   Apr-23-14 M Richter vs E Berg, 2011 (replies)
Once: There is something very striking about the puzzle position: [DIAGRAM] At first glance you might think that white is doing rather well here. He has done a lot of the things that the books say he should do. He is ahead in material (rook for knight exchange), his rooks have open files, ...
   Apr-22-14 E Prandstetter vs Hort, 1984 (replies)
Once: We need to talk about Godzilla. No, really we do. You see, my son, aka the best boy in the world, aka the trainee teenager has just discovered the joys of monsters rampaging through scale models of Tokyo. He loves these movies even though I tell him that it's a metaphor for the damage
   Apr-22-14 LIFE Master AJ chessforum (replies)
Once: Thanks for your kind words on yesterday's POTD. It's good to have you back.
   Apr-21-14 J van Ruitenburg vs S Castellani, 2000 (replies)
Once: Also known as castling <very> long.
   Apr-21-14 Alatortsev vs Koblents, 1945 (replies)
Once: This is the position after 16...Bxd7 [DIAGRAM] Black is playing the standard h file hack - the club player's favourite. Wait until your opponent has castled and then throw everything at his castled king, with rook(s) and queen ganging up on the h file. It's the Barney Rubble of the ...
   Apr-20-14 D Fridman vs Naiditsch, 2013 (replies)
Once: I think I am coming round to the twin conclusions that chess isn't really (just) a game, and that a Sunday POTD isn't really a puzzle. Particularly this one. It's a fabulous attack - very inventive play by Naiditch with tactic after tactic raining down on the white king. That makes it
   Apr-17-14 V Nielsen vs C F Delcomyn, 1894 (replies)
Once: There is an alternative win in 25. Bxf7+ Kxf7 and now either 26. Qxe4 or 26. Rxg4. Here's the position after 26. Qxe4 [DIAGRAM] It's a GOOT position where black has a lot of choices, but no good way to avoid losing material. The pins against the f pawn and Ng4 are going to hurt. A lot.
   Apr-16-14 L T Haller vs Robbins, 1884 (replies)
Once: Interesting that the Prince Charles pawn on e2 doesn't have much to do with the solution. Black puts the coronation dreams to one side and delivers a snap mate. Except that isn't quite true. This is the position after 26...e2 [DIAGRAM] At first glance, it looks as if the e pawn's job ...
   Apr-15-14 Benko vs W Hartmann, 1984 (replies)
Once: Two recommendations - one apparently more serious than the other! The serious one first - 1001 deadly checkmates by John Nunn. I don't know if it has every possible mate in it (almost certainly not) but it probably has enough to keep you occupied for a long while. The seemingly less ...
   Apr-14-14 Once chessforum (replies)
Once: Sally - let me know if you run into problems. It should all pretty painless. I've now got the Kindle emulator running on my PC, phone and I-pad. It somehow feels a little bit naughty (in a good way) to be reading Kindle books on an Apple product. It feels as if you are telling two ...
(replies) indicates a reply to the comment.

The story shop

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: At the risk of sounding too keen to get another sale....

This kindle thing is not so hard - honest! If you google "kindle reader for PC" or "kindle reader for Mac" (depending on whether you dress to the left or the right) those nice people at Amazon will cheerfully offer you a free download app thingy.

Mind you, writing it and converting it from word to kindle was moderately frustrating. We used at least eight different software packages, some for the first time. I could easily write another book about that part of the adventure!

Premium Chessgames Member
  hms123: <Once>

You made

This ought to give your book a boost.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hms123: And this really ought to help:
ChessBookForum chessforum


Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: You are a star! Many thanks for the plug.
Premium Chessgames Member
  hms123: <Once> Thanks, but now I am busy worrying about the doings over in Tottenham. Woe is me! Or should that be Woe is us! Woe are us?

Ok, just plain <Woe!> will have to do.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: The Spurs are going through a mini rough patch, especially as they have just parted company with their manager. Mind you, they are still seventh in the premiership which is not too bad.

Liverpool, on the other hand, are second - just two points behind the leaders Arsenal. That is almost unheard of. You see the benefits of supporting two teams - it gives you a chance that at least one will do well.

The big story is Manchester United all the way down the league table at number eight. That might be a reasonable position for most other teams but for the mighty ManU it's a dreadful place to be. I only hope they give the new manager David Moyes a chance to find his feet.

Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: Merry Christmas <Once>! A little down-time is always nice


Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Happy Christmas, Morf!

It's been a bit more of an event than usual here in Godalming, Surrey. A tremendous storm brought flooding and power outages, which meant that we spent a large part of Christmas Day driving to the mother-in-law's house. That was the only way we could get electricity. Hopefully your Christmas was a little more settled!

Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: Hi <Once> At Christmas I became the proud possessor of my first Kindle. Great, one of my first purchases was your book. Still going through them and really enjoying the puzzles, games and "story beside the story."


Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: That's great to hear - many thanks for buying it. I've been working on fiction recently (and setting up a business) so not had much chance for chess writing. The plan is to get back to it soon.
Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: I'll look up your new books.

Sorry to read about your Christmas power outage. We were fine but some of our acquaitances were not so lucky.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: It could be worse. This is what is happening just a few miles from us...

Premium Chessgames Member
  David2009: Have you tried out Google Play? For us non-Kindle owners it is a high-class alternative. You can experience a customers-eye view for free by choosing your favourite classic.

Oh, and a great post on today's POTD!

click for larger view

White, under heavy pressure for a long time, to play and turn the tables: Nezhmetdinov vs Krogius, 1965 44?

You and <AJ> in independent partnership make a great team!

Cheers, David

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Thanks - I have used google play a couple of times. We're quite a varied family when it comes to tech, with a mixture of apple, Microsoft, google and Samsung. It all mostly works. Mostly!

You don't need to have a kindle to read kindle books. I have the kindle software on my Samsung phone, ipad and a couple of pcs.

Odd how technology has taken over our lives. I had an odd experience earlier today. I wrote an email in gmail (a google product). When I went to press send, a warning box came up. It said that my message included the word "attach" but I hadn't added an attachment. Did I want to attach something?

Now that is seriously spooky. Not only was google reading my email but it also (correctly) worked out that I was about to make a classic email gaffe.

For that matter, my phone has a similarly spooky trick. It reads my diary and sends me a warning when it thinks I need to leave to get to my next appointment. All without me asking to do this.

Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: Please let me take the liberty of posting on your forum my post on yesterday's GOTD.

Your post - a brilliant take, did we go to the same school?

< .... "mark my words">

There is a technical term a "Blake" (no, not 7, but quite possibly Yohan) for this. An assertion made with absolute conviction which turns out to be completely wrong, even spectacularly wrong.

Apparently this game went on very late and at 3 am they were the only two still playing. The tournament referee was groaning because he wanted to go home and muttering "it's never over, it's never over :("

Just then the white player's wife arrived, really angry because hubby hadn't come home. She looked very worked up and ready for some very physical action.

And just then the referee shouted "that's enough you two, or it's Neverova for me!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Like it!

Actually when I saw the "Never say Never" pun, I couldn't help thinking of the poor James Bond film of the same name where a much too old Sean Connery creaked back into the old DJ.

I've not heard the expression a "Blake" before. Although I do remember Blake's seven very well. A British attempt to do a Star Wars.

Mind you, it did have one or two redeeming features...

Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: <redeeming features> Yes, Jacqueline Pearce aka Servalan, my favourite character from the series. What a team she and Avon might have made, unbeatable! Just imagine what they'd be like to play chess against :O

Actually she looks a lot like several of my daughter's chums. Probably is one now I think of it ;)

World Athletics championship 100 and 200 m men's sprint in 2011. Of course, everyone knew who would win. Usain Bolt of course, the fastest man ever <mark my words>. Nobody else need turn up. But he didn't win. They were both won by a man called ..... Blake

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Yes, it's funny how sure things sometimes don't happen. Not heard the story about Blake, but it's a good one.

Somehow I struggle to get too excited about athletics. Unless there is a story (say Bolt, Coe & Ovett or Zola Budd)it all feels a bit samey. Or maybe that's a philistine thing to say?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi,

I want to get your kindle book but I gave back to my daughter my kindle Christmas present.

A truly awful thing, you cannot swot a fly with a kindle, nor can you rip out a page to roll a cigarette.

My family wants me to read electric books and smoke electric cigarettes!

I know nothing about these things, nothing at at all. If I get it downloaded from a friend (I'll pay for it) can his kindle print it out?

Your posts are a breath of fresh air on here.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hms123: <Sally Simpson>

You can't print it out but you can get the Kindle app (free) on your laptop or desktop or phone or tablet (even iPad) and read it there.



Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: That's just what I was about to say!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Thank you - I'll try it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Sally - let me know if you run into problems. It should all pretty painless. I've now got the Kindle emulator running on my PC, phone and I-pad.

It somehow feels a little bit naughty (in a good way) to be reading Kindle books on an Apple product. It feels as if you are telling two fighting children to shake hands and be nice to each other.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: I'm getting a friend to download it and lend me his kindle thing.
Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: <<Apr-22-14 Once: Thanks for your kind words on yesterday's POTD. It's good to have you back.>>

Thanks, and you are very welcome.

Actually, more than once, you have analyzed the key part of the game for me ... which is good, because then I don't feel I have to! :)

Congrats on the book. Maybe I will get the Kindle thingie and buy your book ...

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