Should I Read for Fun or Read for Study?

Should I Read for Fun or Read for Study?

Read for fun or read for study? AKA extensive or intensive reading? I’m specifically referring to reading books in Japanese, but this can be applied to any subject or language you want to learn.   Extensive reading is a fancy way of saying reading for fun. The “extensive” implying that you want to read as much and as wide ranging as possible in the language you’re studying. Honestly I think you should just read whatever you want to read. Forcing yourself to read subjects you find boring because you think you should read them can be counter productive. The point is… Read More…


Where to Get Japanese Novels Outside of Japan

Where can you get Japanese novels? With the wonders of the internet there are quite a few ways you can procure Japanese novels outside of Japan! These suggestions may also work for manga in Japanese, as well as non-fiction, and other books, but I mostly based my research on novels. Not every international Japanese book store or website is listed below. I tried to find options that had the widest availability and most convenience for ordering internationally. There are three options for physical and four options for digital Japanese novels. A few tips when it comes to looking for a… Read More…


How to Get from Intermediate to Advanced Japanese

Many language learners hit this point around intermediate level where they feel like they’ve plateaued. It’s the same for Japanese learners, coming in at around JLPT N3 to N2 level. This point, where you feel yourself stagnating, is the time to change up your approach to studying Japanese! Here is how you get from intermediate to advanced levels with your Japanese learning.   70% Consume, 30% Study Up until the plateau, most of Japanese learners’ time is taken up by studying. Especially if they attend Japanese classes. This means focusing on a textbook, studying for tests, doing homework; all important… Read More…


How to Remember Japanese Vocabulary

Remembering new words can be difficult. Remembering new words in an entirely different language, can be an even greater challenge. Not to mention that Japanese is notorious for being a language that takes time to learn for English speakers. (Especially as the alphabet and cultural approach to the language is so different.) There is, however, a trick to remembering vocabulary, grammar, and kanji long-term without putting too much time in. (In other words, without having to drill vocabulary by writing it down twenty times on a piece of paper.) This trick is actually one you’ve probably already come across before…… Read More…


Hacks for Reading Japanese Novels

Hacks for Reading Japanese Novels

  I recently shared on Twitter how I had just finished reading a novel and felt inspired to write something useful about it. The following are a few hacks I’ve developed/picked up while reading Japanese novels. Hope you find them useful for your own reading! Bookmark Names and Terms Not that you should highlight every name or term, but instead write frequently used universe terms and names onto a piece of paper used as a bookmark. These are great because you can quickly reference terms as you come across them without having to flick back to a previous page where… Read More…


Quality Japanese Self Study Techniques

The majority of Japanese Talk articles focus on “Tips & Tricks” to study Japanese. These focus on study methods for improving speaking or reading, or studying in general if you’re busy, etc. Memrise is normally my go-to learning app for studying Japanese. (Lord knows there are a lot of courses on Memrise.) But I’ve been using a new method recently that’s been a lot more effective.   The Drill Method (aka Quantity) Here’s a quick story. In 2015 I took the JLPT N1 for the first time. I used the Nihongo Soumatome books and studied their kanji and vocabulary using… Read More…


How to Be Productive When Studying Japanese

It’s incredibly easy to constantly think “I’ll do this later” and then not. Then the day ends and you haven’t studied. Then the week, then, if you’re not careful, the month! It’s incredibly easy to do. Sometimes you don’t even realize you’ve not studied in over a week until it’s too late. Even I struggle to be more productive with Japanese, but you’ve got to find a system that works for you. This could just be a single app and/or a combination of productivity techniques. Here are a few suggestions that you can implement to become more productive when studying… Read More…


How to Acquire Japanese Naturally

Acquire Japanese Naturally

I have always been a firm believer of the importance of combining study and using Japanese. Actually, that’s a lie. I used to be very lazy when it came to using Japanese but enjoyed studying immensely. It’s only in recent the last 5 years that I’ve been using Japanese more and more. Acquiring it through natural means while also studying. Using Japanese when you’re not used to it can be surprisingly difficult. However, using Japanese can be a far more effective way to remember Japanese long-term.   It was a few months ago that someone directed me to the work of… Read More…


The JLPT is Over, What Now?

JLPT's Over, What Now?

The JLPT is finally over! You’ve slogged for months and months (or at least weeks and weeks?) studying vocabulary, kanji, grammar. You challenged yourself and whether you pass or failed you did it! Now it’s the winter holidays, your life is getting busy and your brain wants to rest. It’s so tempting to just stop studying for a few weeks! And you should! But also shouldn’t! Here’s why and what you can do to stop your Japanese getting dull.   Stop Studying (But Only for a Bit!) If you’re suffering from burn out it’s sometimes healthier for your brain to… Read More…