My thoughts, tips, and ramblings after reaching level 60 — long post

I just want to complain about words like 怠慢 and 怠惰 both fucking radicals mean “lazy” and yet they mean different things and ive been getting this shit wrong for months. i think my brain is just unable to continue remembering

1 Like

Thank you so much for this post. I’ve only started off with wanikani last week, and I had doubts, but I cannot believe how much progress I’ve made since starting, and it’s awesome to see a post from someone so much farther along!

1 Like

Nailbat is now fingers btw

“fingers” has some awesome potential for mnemonics, but they’d be NSFW

That is crazy, I just got into WaniKani and after reading your story I am inspired to do the same

Thank you. I read your whole post. For me mnemonics work sometimes. A lot of the time I end up learning a kanji only, so that’s fine. I am only level one, and have previous experience with Japanese (3 years in high school, one semester in college). My grammar is OK and I have retained most of my Japanese from half a life ago, maybe because I have always had a smartphone, operating system, game console, and any game in Japanese menus. My weakness has always been kanji, as I never actively learnt any Japanese after that one college course, but did learn Spanish conversationally and dabbled a bit in Korean (reading the ‘alphabet’ only) and Cantonese (speaking only).

I have been on level one for for several days and noticed you flew by yours. Maybe it takes longer to start out at the moment. One test told me to wait seven days. I am excited to push my Japanese past the N5/N4 level I’ve been stuck at forever.

(my fave kanji word is 天邪鬼)

same here, restarting wanikani from scratch after a 3 year break. Good luck :slight_smile:

I’ve done most of the things you put in your thread, except that I regard to get mnemonics the shortest possible, to save ‘memory space’. The one thing that makes me suffer the most is some on’yomis in which I didn’t applied the mentioned tricks.


Same for me. Sometimes I think of this post and wish I’d followed the advice better.


Brand newbie here! It was really encouraging to read your post today, to see where I’m heading and how to strategize getting there. Thank you so much, and congrats!

1 Like

nice, good job

Hi Vargsvan, since I am a newbie to this journey, and really excited, I would like to know is this course of learning kanji completely free? Can I reach level 60 even without paying a penny? Sorry, if my question sounds stupid, but as of now I have not come across even a single community that teaches so much of Kanji for free.
Thank you.

The first three levels are free. After that your options are monthly subscription for $9, yearly for $89, or lifetime access for $299.

1 Like

Secret option number 4, wait for Christmas/New Year and get lifetime for $199. Bit far off though, in February.

Thank you, for sharing this.


Thanks for the tips! I am new here but will take what you have written to heart.

1 Like

Woah, cool! And congratulations! Thank you for your insights. That’s interesting about the mnemonics, I didn’t realize it was possible to change them. I would naturally prefer to associate radicals and kanji with their actual meanings (in Japanese if I can manage–There are some words and phrases that I know, and I can count.)

Sometimes the associations feel like a mental backflip to connect a set of strokes to a word in English that evokes an image similar to the strokes, then back into a meaning or phrase in Japanese. 大, for example–It looks like a big person, but I would rather just remember だい, because dai- sounds big, and it’s in Japanese. “Big” is not that big a word. “Grand” is big, but “grand” is in English, and doesn’t evoke the following of words in Japanese, but in English. I can talk about “big, grand love,” but “dai-” asks for “tsuki” to follow. All this here is just my own personal perspective, anyway. Some might share my feeling of rhythm in speech, and others may not.

I have just come from learning Spanish during a trip to South America, and I found that a great deal of my fast learning came from the feeling the sounds of words and phrases gave me, rather than a mnemonic. When I say, “beso,” my mouth makes a little kiss, and lingers on the softness with so~~. When I say, “dar,” I feel the rhythm send away my voice. Kisses also take my breath away. Conjugations are easy like this. “Pasar” feels the rhythm pass over p-a-s and continue on with -ar. Pasó ended before it began, and pasará is yet more beats ahead. Spanish is an ideal example, but English also has its rhythm, and without yet understanding the words, I hear it also in Japanese.

I imagine that no natural language of this world is without its own unique rhythm that makes it natural to string phonemes into words and phrases and from there into sentences and passages and poetry–A rhythm which also clues one in to the rhythms and habits of its native speakers, giving more than a mere code for speaking, but a backbeat upon which to communicate meaning.

1 Like

good post! level 1 here thanks you for the heads up



This topic was automatically closed 365 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.