Writing Practice


#1

Good day to you all. By writing, I mean typing ( in my case- if you want to write by hand; that is a different conversation :/) and the actual creation of sentences yourself- and not just reading. I was wondering what do you all do to practice this. I have been using Lang 8 for a while for this but I actually find it difficult to come up with things to write about? Any ideas?

Thank you in advance. :smiley:


#2

Presumably you have some other hobbies aside from studying Japanese that you can work up some passion for. Areas where looking up the appropriate vocab and collocations won’t just be a chore, but something you can’t wait to do so you can chew the ears off of unsuspecting Japanese people about your thing of choice.


#3

I haven’t reached the text production stage of Japanese yet, but I have learned English and Italian, and I can say that, in order to improve your writing skills, in addition to writing, you have to read, read, read, read, and then read some more.


#4

I don’t force myself to write Lang-8 every day. Instead, I write it like a blog, whenever I think of anything Japanese-related enough…

But then, I paused Japanese writing to study grammar first.

I presume that the next step after proper grammar would be immersion. Yeah, reading a lot.


#5

Interesting. I do a fair amount of reading already- NHK News Web Easy and basic manga I have picked up from Amazon. Would you say that by reading a lot, it actually becomes easier to write/ speak the language. As I am finding that when I read, let’s say a news article, I am understanding 60-70% of it but when it comes to writing a passage myself- I become unstuck very, very quickly.


#6

Other than watching anime and reading manga- my hobby list ends about there… :blush:


#7

Most of my writing practice comes from chatting on HelloTalk, Skype, or Line. On all these platforms, I’ve been communicating with some people for so long that we have pretty in depth conversations about various topics. But it has taken quite a bit of time to find people reliable enough to do this on a fairly regular basis.


#8

Exactly. The more you read, the more you become familiar to the patterns and structures of a language. Studying grammar may teach you what is correct or incorrect, but reading will teach you what sounds natural and what doesn’t. When you start producing text in a language you’re starting to learn, you will often come up with sentences that are technically correct, but that are really weird to a native. For example, you could write the English sentence “It is necessary that I drink water” instead of “I’m thirsty”, but it’s weird, and you pick up on this kind of stuff by reading (and listening too, of course). The more you read, the more you will soak in.


#9

Thank you. That actually helps a great deal. Looks like I will crank up the reading for a while and see what I can do. I imagine I should be a bit more patient as well- results will probably only come over time.


#10

I have a tutor once a fortnight and she sets me a written task after each lesson

Topics include: countries I want to visit, why I want to go to Japan, places I would take a tourist in my home town, self introduction, my experience of the JLPT.

I find it difficult but i can really feel myself getting better and better. When you have to write like this, it really shows you which grammar points you are not confident on and forces you to recap until it makes sense. Each week gets slightly easier. We then correct it together during our lesson.

Maybe set yourself a writing topic and have a go at writing an extended composition and then upload it on HelloTalk or similar?

I also agree with the others, read like crazy! I love Satori Reader or Matcha Yasashii.


#11

Hi there, I use lang-8 to write journal entries. It’s literally just a diary, like “tonight I will go eat at a restaurant” kind of thing. It’s really boring content, but it’s very easy to come up with because I just write stuff that’s happening. I’m at a very, very early beginner level, though, so maybe that is too simple for you.

Btw, I find the quality of corrections very good. People will tell you if what you’re saying is grammatically correct but no one says it that way, or if it’s overly formal.


#12

Hey there,

So there have already been a bunch of great suggestions on this, which I’ll probably start trying myself. One thing I haven’t seen suggested though, is translating documents. I’m not saying you should find complex stories and translate them, but that maybe you can find simple articles that interest you and translate those. It’s a great way to learn vocab about certain topics. Of course, you might find translating to be tedious and boring, in which case this isn’t helpful, but I personally find that it helps me connect with the vocabulary better since I start off being interested in it or understanding it better.

The most important part: After every translation, I upload it onto Lang-8 and wait for the corrections. This way, you can see how well you’re able to communicate the idea of the article, and eventually, how much your communication improves.

It’s basically like another form of a writing prompt.


#13

im create cheap and simple japanese website ~☆ミ

i was done write first entry for my cheap blog and plan to add them to live site~ but currently stuck with html/css layout stuff which is not my forte~


#14

Same here! I think the added social pressure of having to respond to someone who’s written to you is good for the study discipline! :slight_smile:

Also, you learn new words or tidbits about the culture from actual people, which is cool!


#15

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