My guest this week is 21 year old GM-elect Michael Brown. Michael just earned his final GM norm in January 2019, but the path to earning the highest chess title has come with many challenges. In our conversation, Michael walks us through how he overcame those challenges, and gives advice for how others can do the same in their own chess journeys. For many more details about our conversation, check out the timestamps below. Michael can be reached via email here.
0:00- Intro and recap of the tournament at the Charlotte Chess Center and Scholastic Academy where GM-elect Michael Brown got that elusive and coveted 3rd GM Norm. The dramatic GM Norm clinching-game vs. FM Gauri Shankar that Michael discusses can be found here.
10:00- How did Michael stay sharp as his time became more scarce after enrolling in college? Michael mostly credits study partnering with other strong players, such as IM Keaton Kiewra,and IM Shiyam Thavandiran.
16:30- After graduating from BYU in December 2018 what is Michael’s next professional step?
19:30- We discuss Michael’s memorable experience beating world class GM Yu Yangyi in 2016. Michael annotates this game in this very instructive Youtube video, and you can also play through the moves here. We then discuss some of the “super GMs” Michael has played in addition to Yu Yangyi.
32:00- Michael tells a couple fun stories of playing at the notoriously strong Chess.com Isle of Man International tournament in 2017 and getting to see and meet the likes of GM Vishy Anand and GM Magnus Carlsen.
39:00- What have been the most challenging periods during Michael’s chess career? How did he get through them? What advice did his trainer at the time, IM Armen Ambartsoumian, give him?
44:00- What are Michael’s favorite chess books? As a young, improving player, he learned a ton from Winning Chess Brilliancies by GM Yasser Seirawan and later used CT-ART to sharpen his tactics.
51:00- What was the connection between his choice of college, Brigham Young University, and his desire to remain dedicated to chess? What other factors went into Michael’s decision as to which college to attend?
59:00- What is going on with the San Diego Surfers of the Pro Chess League?
1:04- Goodbye and contact info