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As I am writing my first journal, the first item is I need to do a better job of journaling! I need to dedicate time every day to recap, reflect, make some notes and come out an improved trader ! I have only been in DAS for a couple of weeks but was previously paper trading in TD Ameritrade’s Think or Swim platform (TOS). I had real issues with executions and status updates that encouraged me to switch to DAS. Wow, DAS is like lightning compared to TOS. Tough week across the board as I am posting my fourth red day in a row. I am journaling with TraderVue which has been awesome. Quick note on TraderVue; The owner contacted me via e-mail the first day I created an account and helped me import data from TOS. First Class ! Here is a testament to my inconsistent journaling (failing to import days) The blue days are mostly in TOS. May 29 forward was DAS. Then I made the switch to DAS, but did not consistently download the data until this week. I am not blaming DAS on my switch from profitably, but I am definitely doing something different. Just brainstorming while typing; what else is different. I hooked my laptop up to two more monitors so now I have a total of three. I would think this would make me a better trader. Today’s trades: (SIM) Well, this looks like a lot... Ok Question #1; Can I get the buy and sell bullets on the DAS charts ? It is nice on the TraderVue charts, but those don’t show the trend lines etc… Trade 1: OXY ORB on 1 Minute What a late entry! Since that wasn’t my number one stock so not lined up in my montage screen. I think I wasted valuable time resetting my screen as opposed to executing my trade. Also missed the exit on the first resistance level. Minor loss. Poor execution. Good strategy. (#1-B; Is there a better way to do this ?) Trade 2: Thought this was bouncing off VWAP for support and to form ABCD. Had stop set below VWAP Good plan and execution, just failed. Loss, but feel god about this one. Same charts as Trade 1. Trade 3: Thought an ABCD pattern was setting up. Didn’t wait for candlestick to close. Poor execution. Loss Trade 4 Oh nasty bad word. I hit the wrong hot button. Instead of selling 25% and 50% I hit cover and added to my position! I have not done this at all on DAS and now I have done it several times this week. (Much worse on Tuesday) A couple of thoughts; 1. A miss-key should have a 5 minute time out from trading stocks. 2. I bought a keyboard that I programmed side “G-Keys” just for selling and shorting, maybe I should just use those. Layout: G1 - Sell 25% G2 - Sell 50% G3 - Sell 100% G4 - Cover 25% G5 - Cover 50% G6 - Cover 100% 2b. “G-Keys” only work if the montage window is highlighted. This should have been a beautiful trade. Don’t make fun of my handwriting ABCD Great strategy, poor-poor execution. Error on Hot-Keys. Trade 5 Broke VWAP after four strong candles. Number one stock on my list. Market is strong with heavy volume on the airline stocks today. Of course now I am extra-burned with the huge take-off the stock did later. I could not watch the market all day because I had errands to run Only thing I feel good about is the entry and stop. Looking for feedback on this one. Trade 6 Revenge trade on previous trade. UAL went under VWAP. I went short. It went up. Seems funny now. Ahhhhh! Trade 7A and 7B DAL breaks above VWAP and I go long with almost 1000 shares. This is my all-in commit, so I am feeling good about the setup. Hot-Key error (again?) cover 25% instead of sell, but I quickly sell 50% at one cent better so I adjusted fast. And then…….my DAS froze ! I felt good because I put in a hard stop. I called them in the afternoon and their advice was if that happened again to “Switch the Quote Server” File => Data Stream Mode => Switch Quote Server Ok, also set up my mobile DAS. Don’t know what to think about this one. Got back in at 10:05 to continue the trade… In at $30.22 down to $30.14...i’m out ! Poor entry and exit, but better to get out then hold while you're steaming… Still a winner...sick…. Trade 8 EBAY Looking for a reversal back to VWAP. Buy at 49.20 Feeling really good about the trade, good risk to reward, good setup… Double up and buy again at 49.26. ALL IN. Hindsight 20/20 Risk Analysis First entry at 49.20 If my stop should have been at 48.82. 38 cents to share, 1R = $100, max share size = 263 shares. I was 304+304 = 608. I think I lost my nerves. TRADE 9 OXY Was thinking this was a reversal back to VWAP. Good news got out as soon as it was going bad. ====================================================== Recap: Another tough day. A little frustrated for sure. I have some leftover frustration because Wednesday was such a huge day in the market and I was red for the day. On the positive notes. I think I have a really good pre-market routine. I am listening to the morning show, going through the scanners. I am making my list independently and I felt confident about the stock selection. I love the way my DAS is setup. I think my trade station is laid out really well. Some constructive take-aways: When trading ORB for 1 minute, focus on the trade NOT the DAS layout… I feel like I have a very good concept of the strategies in the book and the videos. (Can always be better!) Good use of hard and soft stops. Can’t have hot-key errors. I know this is practice in SIM, but jeez! Use programmed G-Keys ? Slow down and think where you are in the trade. I only take one trade at a time so no excuse. Time-out for hot-key errors. Looking for feedback on trade 5. Thinking back at both trade 7 and trade 8 I got out early without proper stops. Both setups had perfect strategies and would have been monster winners if I had stayed in. Patience ?? Thoughts and questions: Any overall thoughts/feedback ? Too many trades for a beginner ? I personally don’t think so, only because they all have a strategy attached. After the open should I only be on 5-minute candles ? I think what I really need is proper stops, proper risk and patience. Should I be in the market longer ? The action dies down after the first 45 minutes, but it seems some patience would catch some huge potential moves. Wow, this is a lot of work. I spent a lot of time on this, but I got a lot out of it. Everybody can’t spend this much time (??) Honestly frustrated. I have put a lot of time and effort in this. I have studied and feel that I have a good concept of the strategies. Will keep plugging along, this is something I really want to accomplish ! -tom n