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Saturday, January 1, 2011

A Patzer's Story - Parallels between chess and battle with depression

Chess news and chess trivia blog (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2010

Hello Everyone,

We came across this new book that has an interesting story - an important one too. MBD Consulting announced this week the release of 'A Patzer’s Story' authored by its managing director, Timothy A. Sawyer, and published by PublishAmerica. In the book, Sawyer outlines his battle with depression and draws parallels between that and his passion for chess.

“This is a book for chess players and non-players alike,” says Sawyer. “Anyone who reads this book can take something away whether tips on how to improve their chess game or tips on how to improve their life.”

“A Patzer’s Story” contains 22 “rules” or axioms to help the reader navigate chess, and possibly life. For example, rule 7 reads: “Treat your opponent as you want to be treated;” and rule 7A advises: “Treat yourself as you want to be treated.”

Timothy A. Sawyer is an IT Professional and managing director of MBD Consulting. He enjoys playing chess, but over the past year has found many things in life a challenge due to his ongoing battle with depression. He says, “Frustration breeds action,” so he decided to take things into his own hands and to channel this negative energy regarding recent losses. It was the writing of this book that cleared his head, and he now wishes to share his insights with the world.

An interesting excerpt from the book:

"I expect only the best from myself. Most of the time, I expect perfection and get easily upset over “stupid” mistakes. Being overly critical of yourself does not bode well for your psyche - remember that, if nothing else. I am not a mental health professional. You can expect that everything I am telling you is based on my own personal experience and reflection. You can expect that I will not sugar coat anything. I am known for being direct and to the point. Sometimes I am too direct. Whether that is a character flaw is up to you to decide. You can expect that I will treat you with dignity and respect. Everyone deserves that. I will not “talk down” to you or treat you like an idiot. Try to read this book as though you and I were having a conversation, albeit a somewhat one-sided conversation because you cannot give immediate feedback. Throughout the book I present different “rules”. These are not additions to the rules of chess, but rather axioms that, if followed, will hopefully help you survive and enjoy the game of chess, no matter what your rating or skill level. In fact, these rules can be applied away from the chessboard. It is up to you as to whether or not you agree with them and whether or not you follow them. Again, this is all based on MY personal experience."

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