I wrote an article on learning Japanese. It is good

I mean how many times do you really write those cards? a signature is memorized and if push comes to shove you can ‘draw’ t from your phone

learning to handwrite is a big investment

Yes, you wrote this:

In short: “don’t bother”. I certainly can’t see anything that is constructive in it!


Yeah, man, that’s not clear at all. :sweat_smile: you made way too many assumptions.

I think you might want to rework this a bit… Would a person who is impatient want to spend a year doing Wanikani? Would a person who is cheap want to spend money on all the paid resources you recommend?

One of your key points was that time is more valuable than money, so I think you should consider emphasizing how the guide is meant for people who want to learn Japanese in the most efficient way possible (though that of course is subjective). There are a lot of people interested in that.

Or you could go down the Japanese for Dummies route? But if that’s what you intended, it’s just not what you wrote in the article lol

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I took it as “get a bigger understanding first”
he/she is not wrong tho that is not example feedback either of course
like duh
but if I wait until I’m completely fluent, I won’t be here anymore and I will miss a lot in between
I won’t be able to write from this perspective anymore and the people I know around me will have changed

maybe that’s why content like this, even attempts, are rare
most guides I find are quite limited, old and never have any tables and similar stuff

that being said I will push my learning for a few months, rewrite the piece and see how things are then

I will be able to come bak to this thread and use all the feedback from here so that makes me quite happy :slight_smile:


Fair enough!

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I don’t think anyone thinks it isn’t. The question is can it be useful. You came down on the “no” side, so it’s reasonable for people to offer what they think are counters to that.


Probably a couple dozen a year. And, yeah, it is a huge investment, but even at my middish-beginner level it’s paid off in making more personal connections with people.

I honestly don’t see how it’s any different than a person who learns to paint for the fun of it. Or someone who learns to play an instrument for its enjoyment. :man_shrugging: Not everything in life has to be for monetary gain or some subjective standard of “usefulness.”

Off topic, not for OP

I’m sorry, I don’t mean to judge, because I don’t know the particulars of your situation, but this just strikes me as really sad. Do you not find the time you’re spending now doing something you hate to be a waste as well? Would it not be better to instead spend that time finding something to do that you’d enjoy?


“Each Kanji has 2 to 10 ways to read it — which is often different from how you speak it”

This might be a good example. I’m assuming you’re referring to the use of kun’yomi and on’yomi here, but it took me some time to figure that out. Don’t get me wrong - I also enjoy a minimalistic direct way of writing, but for me it’s sometimes a little too short.

I suggest you sign up for a course in technical writing.

Teacher does not correct you (waste of time, does not work)

This statement you make is incorrect in its absoluteness.

To quote Ortega (2013), who wrote a pretty accessible introduction to second language acquisition: “The accumulating evidence suggests that providing negative feedback in some form results in better post-test performance than ignoring errors (Russell and Spada, 2006).” (p. 75)

She also concludes: “Negotiation for meaning, other- and self-initiated output modification, negotiation of form during collaboration, and negative feedback of varying degrees of explicitness all carry potential for learning, provided they occur under optimal conditions that recruit attention to the language code. They facilitate psycholinguistic and metalinguistic processes of segmenting the input, noticing gaps and holes, parsing messages syntactically, monitoring and hypothesis testing; these are in turn processes that help L2 learners crack the language code.” (p. 79)

Source: Ortega, L. (2013). Understanding Second Language Acquisition . New York, NY: Routledge.

Memorization is hard. This is memorization on steroids. Plenty of studies prove that acquisition is better.

I’m also not quite sure I understand what you’re trying to say here. Acquisition is a not a learning strategy or a method, the term simply describes the process of a learner acquiring another language. Successful acquisition requires memorization and lots of other activities and techniques. The article by Mickan et al. (2019) that you link to in this context also doesn’t seem to support your point? It just discusses a very specific phenomenon, i.e. language attrition, which isn’t a situation new learners are faced with.

I would also consider that term pretty offensive and would definitely avoid using it even if it’s not referring to a person in this context and supposed to just be an abbreviation.


Write what you know.


No full circle. Jap is still as offensive now as it was 50 years ago.

Japanese doesn’t need to be shortened to Jap anyway, especially not when you want to be taken seriously as a writer.


Thank you for reminding me about duolingo. It isn’t prefect by a long shot, and doesn’t teach you slang, but it is helping jog my memory back to n5 level that I had reached when before I stopped studying. Talking to my tutor tonight! Wish me luck getting back into 僕の日本語のレッスンたち

I don’t love you article for me, but I respect that you’ve have a different japanese experience, and I agree that weeding through what is useful and what wastes your time is hard when you are starting to learn japanese.


And here I am telling level 1’s in the Absolute Beginner Book Club what to prepare for, and saying that the upcoming manga’s going to be the most difficult and best first native material for them to read =D

I spent maybe two years learning upwards of 2,000 vocabulary words (with SRS) before I started WaniKani, and before I started native reading. I’ve probably forgotten 1,000 of them.

Vocabulary lookup is extensive in the beginning of reading. Then you get to know common words, and you start to consciously recall them without needing to look them up again. Then you start to unconsciously recall them without needing to think about it.

I find that for me personally, learning vocabulary in a vacuum (SRS, with sample sentences that do not interest me) only goes so far. I struggle to remember it after not seeing it for a long while. Opposite that, encountering a word in native material, I look it up, then forget it, for the first few times. But if it comes up enough, I’ll start to remember. The magic is when a word I recent read comes up in SRS, or learned in SRS comes up in reading, then I remember it best.

I’m at the point where I can read simple manga without looking up more than a few things per volume. But I’m working through a novel in the Beginner Book Club, and I feel like I’m looking up every other word. Sometimes more than that. It comes with the territory.

Feel free to follow along with the Absolute Beginner Book Club here on the forums, and see how reading (hopefully) works out for lower-level readers.

Plenty of people won’t take any offense to it, but with a global audience it’s best to play it safe (within reason). For use within sentences, it’s unprofessional to shorten “Japan” or “Japanese”, and for space-limited table, “JP” or “JPN” works just as well.


I read it several times along with some of your other articles (interesting and fun). Between the lines I see it’s a snappy crash course recipe for beginner Japanese which is great…but it doesn’t exactly present this way. Your heading of " Learning Japanese In One Year" implies a mastery and we know this not true at all. I get that this is a attention grabbing sharp/sassy style with a bit of tongue & cheek inspiration. Tofugu does this too and keeps the reading fun and light. But this can also backfire with bold statements like above giving your readers skepticism.

So I may recommend sharing your experience and what your goals a bit more so the reader can relate, have trust/transparency and have realistic expectations. This would make the writing kanji part make more sense…I wouldn’t recommend learning to write in the first year of study either with the exception of writing kana knowing kanji stroke order formula. However, after we know after basic fundaments, learners often focus on their language goals. Reading WK user experiences, everyone is different! So not surprising, the ‘recipes’ vary quite a bit so the singularity for the ‘best’ become entirely subjective (including goals of writing kanji as well which some users have).

Agreed, it’s not even negotiable IMO and I think plenty would take offense.

Speaking of, I see no mention of Japanese culture or history study. Even just some basics is essential if you plan to travel or speak with natives.


I know that plenty of people won’t take offence to it, but plenty of people won’t also take offence to words like Paki, Chink, and Spic, it doesn’t mean they can ever be condoned or justified.


That’s why everything else I wrote in that paragraph agrees with what you wrote =D


I know I know you did! I just wanted to be crystal! :kissing_heart:

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By the way, I’m not suggesting that people should use offensive language with smaller audiences. Upon re-reading what I wrote, I see it can be read that way. (Oops. That was not my intention!)

There are some situations where Group A uses a term they don’t know used to be offensive, when communicating to Group B who also don’t know the term used to be offensive, and nobody in Group A or Group B is offended. Then Group C comes in and tells them that the term is offensive.

I think shortening to three letters falls into this category. It seems natural enough: Eng, Spa, Ger, etc.

But, as we’ve both said, best to avoid using something known to be offensive.