I appreciate the compliment, but you actually kinda flipped the point I tried to make in that video.
You’re absolutely correct that knocking out vocab in a specific area or series is something that matters the most. You wanna focus on one thing at a time to give yourself a foothold.
The thing is, though, you don’t need far more vocab than wanikani teaches to read something without difficulty. That’s why I recommend tackling a specific series first.
Lets look at some numbers to understand what I mean. The series doesn’t matter and I’ll gladly do it with any other series people are curious about, but let’s take youjitsu. It’s one of the most popular light novels out there, it’s middle of the road difficulty, and there was someone on here not so long ago learning japanese soley for the purpose of reading that series.
The entire 1st year part of the series:
~20000 unique words.
3789 of those words.
Right off the bat, you should notice that 2700 words you learn on wanikani don’t even show up in a single one of the fourteen books.
Let’s get more specific and look at the first book:
6389 unique words
Covered by wanikani
1335 kanji (it looks like?)
And see, here’s the thing, those 1919 words covered by wanikani aren’t going to be the most common and useful ones in that books.
With 6000 words you could almost read the entire first book without a single unknown word. With the most common 6000 words, you would know about 93% of words across all 14 books of that series.
So let’s do some thinking about what that means for the latter:
The 14 books have:
746818 total words.
19846 unique words
~8.6 words per sentence
Those 6000 words will cover:
You can expect to come across an unknown word once every 14 words or so with that. That’s not even once per sentence.
That’s the starting point for reading that series. That’s basically as hard as it’s going to get for you. You then have the next 14 books to learn with that as your foothold. And again, that’s taking the most 6000 common words across all 14 books. Your starting point is even easier the more you narrow it down.
My point is, 6000 words isn’t shit at the end of the day when it comes to being a high level reader. This series alone sits at 20k. However, 6000 words can be a very significant starting point if you learn the right 6000.. What’s the right 6000? The 6000 that you’re going to use the most. And the only way to figure out what those 6000 are is by knowing what you want to read and getting it from there. A one size fits all program is not only gonna be unable to teach you the most common words you’ll come across, but it will teach you plenty you won’t be coming across at all.
1Q84 (3 books):
18480 unique words
Words from wanikani: 3899 (40% of the words you learned on wanikani won’t show up)
Mushoku tensei (25 books):
29148 unique words (holy shit)
Words on wanikani: 4571 (30% of the words you learn on wanikani won’t show up)
Harry Potter 1:
7997 unique words
Words on wanikani: 2184 (66% of words you learn on wanikani won’t show up)