Finally started writing kanji! Tips would be appreciated!

So I finally decided to go way out of my comfort zone and begin to practice writing Kanji on paper! It’s something I’ve attempted more than once in the past couple of years but I’ve never really committed to it. So far this is my 2nd day writing Kanji, and I’m willing to dedicate around 30 minutes a day, but if I’m not making the progress I want I’ll bump it up to an hour.

I bought a Genkouyoushi practice book, which has around 200 spaces for kanji on each page. So far I’m only about halfway through the first page, and it’s pretty tedious right now, but that’s how WaniKani, KaniWani, Bunpro, and basically every other Japanese website felt at first, so I’m willing to keep going.

I’d love to do monthly updates on my progress so we can all see how much I can improve.
My handwriting in English is pretty atrocious, so Japanese is like my fresh start to have nice handwriting.

Currently I’m using the app Kanji Study, which shows the animations for stroke order and shows a grid similar to the one in my practice book, but other than that I’m mostly playing it by eye, which probably isn’t too good of an idea, so if anyone has any tips about practicing writing Japanese, please leave advice in the replies! Thank you all! And good luck with your Japanese studies, may the crabigator bless you all.

16 Likes

Only the usual stuff about paying attention to proportions, spacing, and the little ticks at the end of lines.

Other than that, great start. :wink::+1:

3 Likes

Sounds great! You are on a good path. Keep going! Let me mention Remembering the Kanji by James Heisig. He teaches how to write and remember the writing for about 2200 kanji. You can download the introduction and first 294 kanji via this link, https://nirc.nanzan-u.ac.jp/en/files/2012/12/RK-1-6th-edition-sample.pdf Also, there is a very helpful site that shows the writing of each kanji from Heisig’s Remembering the Kanji book 1 and book 2. It is found via this link, rtk1-v6 - rtk-search This site shows the writing of each kanji in a step-by-step play feature. You can view the writing “forward” or “backward.”

3 Likes

There are basic stuff about proportions and square division, that I remembered from Chinese class. Otherwise, how long a line should go. I am not sure how much they share with Japanese.

There is another thing about Japanese people’s meticulosity on several other details, but I wouldn’t worry about that for now.

3 Likes

Looks nice!

Once you start writing Kanjs with more strokes you might feel the squares you currently use are very small (super advanced level).
It is easier to start with larger squares!

2 Likes

I feel the need to plug this channel again, not only educational but also funny at times. For me it is like asmr for the eyes, very satisfying to watch.

5 Likes

This is a general question.

I made a scan of a tracing booklet from my son for Hiragana and Katakana which I wanted to share here at some point.

What is the best way to share a larger pdf here?

I might also scan some notebooks with different square sizes because I feel it gives writing so much framework in the beginning.

My experience is that Google Drive links work pretty well. You could try uploading them there and then leaving links here.

Here are some suggestions I posted in the past. You might want to read the full post for some of my other thoughts on writing:

That aside, maybe try following some calligraphers on YouTube (e.g. Takumi), Instagram and Twitter (e.g. Kayo-sensei). That might give you an idea of how they move their writing instruments and what sorts of shapes they aim for. (I do some calligraphy myself, but I only occasionally post photos, and generally don’t post videos, at least for the moment.)

8 Likes

My main piece of advice is to always use a decent, free-flowing pen, and definitely never a biro. Something that reliably writes smoothly and writes fairly thin lines so you can fit the detail of a high-stroke-count kanji in a small space. (I like the Uniball Micro pens, which are fairly cheap but also pretty good; lots of other options too.) I was never aiming for anything beyond “can write from memory legibly and reasonably quickly”, though…

2 Likes

If I do that, is my email address visible to anyone who is accessing that file?

No, the link is a random hash so there’s no identifying information.

3 Likes