Welcome to my blog!

Hi everybody!

A little bit about me. My name is Mark Bluvshtein, I am currently 22 years old and I am currently studying Science and Technology Studies at York University.

So what’s so special about me? I’m a pretty normal guy, but not when it comes to chess. I became an International Grandmaster (GM) at the age of 16, the youngest one in Canadian history. Currently, I am the #1 chess player in Canada, with a FIDE rating of 2583. This blog will mainly be a chess blog. It’s my chess experiences that I want to share with the world.

But now is not just a random time for me to start a blog. Starting in August, I will be doing what I have wanted to do for years. I will be starting a full year of professional chess. I will push myself to the limit. With a current world ranking of 273 in the world, I want to crack the top 100. It’s now or never, since I am finishing my degree requirements this summer. During this year, I will be traveling all over the world, competing in the strongest tournaments that I can find.

As much as I am doing this for myself, I hope this project will benefit others. I hope that all Canadian players will find my journey to be an interesting and enlightening one into the world of Grandmaster chess. I certainly know that when I was younger, it would be exciting to follow a GM on his journey. I hope to unite Canadian chess as a whole, with something that I consider a very positive project. Also important is the idea of putting Canada back on the world chess map, from which it has disappeared in recent years. We have not kept up with the elite chess world which is only getting more and more competitive.

Why are my personal reasons for taking this year long journey? Simply put, I believe that I haven’t even scratched the surface of my chess goals. I have never been a full-time chess player, yet I have become a pretty good Grandmaster. I have always had devotion to chess, but it was never full devotion due to my academic commitments. But this year will be different, I will be more serious than ever. 12 months of playing chess will be quite a change from my current schedule of 9 month hibernation followed by 3 months of playing, as it has been in the last several years. I have not reached my peak. I have wanted to do this sort of a thing ever since I graduated high school, but for me, education came first.

This year will not be easy, there will be ups and downs, as there are in every aspect of life. It will not be a vacation, since even when I am not playing at tournaments, my main focus will be to study chess and improve. It will be a full-time job. When you want to succeed in anything, not just chess, this is the only way. Lack of effort will result in questions of “what if?” I plan to get rid of any of these questions.

This year of professional chess will start in August, when I am done with my university studies. I will be posting interesting things until then. Some of these upcoming projects include player biographies of the Canadian Olympic teams, as well as the CYCC, which I will be attending.

I hope everybody will enjoy my blog. I will try to do my best to maintain it frequently. During my tournaments, I will try to give daily updates, with some game analysis. I hope you enjoy it!



7 Responses to Welcome to my blog!

  1. egis says:

    Good luck in your journey.

    Please keep a ratio of chess_moves-to-words moderate 🙂

  2. Hans Jung says:

    Hi Mark, Blogging on a regular basis is not easy but Im glad you are doing it. I look forward to everything that you will write and will be an avid reader. – Hans

  3. rollingpawns says:


    Welcome to wordpress blogging. I also have a chess blog here for almost 2 years. I am much older than you and my native language is the same as yours. It would be very interesting to follow your journey. I think sometimes that chess could be my career, though I started late and didn’t have such success in your age. With your education secured, you really can take a shot at chess, at least you won’t regret that you didn’t try it while doing some boring job :). I would appreciate if you can visit my blog, your comments would be very valuable for me – “A” class player.
    If you want, I can put a reference to you on my blog, so my friends can come here too.

    • Hi Rolling Pawns,

      Your blog looks very interesting.
      I can certainly learn some things from it.
      Some text within the pgn file might be interesting to read, with thoughts of yours during the game.
      I think I will be doing a similar thing while I will be at tournaments.

      I’ve put your blog on my blogroll.
      Would be great if you blogroll me too.

  4. rollingpawns says:


    Thank you for the reference, I added reference to your blog too.
    Regarding blogging on wordpress – you should take into account that you can’t insert any pgn in any form into your post, only as external link, like I do keeping pgn files on chessflash.com. If you are OK with it, that’s fine, if not – I think blogspot.com allows you to insert pgn (generated Java script I think – see for example http://castlingqueenside.blogspot.com), so you can move your blog there. I just found it out after some time and didn’t want to move. I like your idea about putting my thoughts into pgn, it will make it less dry.

  5. Hi Mark,
    I really appreciate your initiative and look forward to some very interesting entries. We will be doing our share to spread the news about your blog here on the West Coast; see annoucement here:
    All the best in your chess endeavors and life in general!
    Kind regards,

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