10 In Japanese learning journey (:

Reading in Japanese – kanji woes

hehe sorry for the lack of posts on Korean stuff. As you guys can see, I’m recently very much obsessed with Japanese. I promise the Korean stuff will come back soon. Please don’t stop reading the blog just because I’m not talking about Korean so much D: D:

Spent most of my free time on reading 白夜行!! On page 13 so far and doing fine! ^^ I’m kinda amazed though. It took me damn long to be able to read something in Korean, and somehow I find that I can read in Japanese a lot faster??! Weird. It took me around 4 years plus to be somewhat comfortable with Korean fiction books but yet less than 2 years of Japanese study, here I am reading Japanese novels?! WEIRD. Is it weird that I find it harder to parse Korean sentences than Japanese sentences? I don’t know. Maybe it’s because of Kanji that I find Japanese easier to read?? I have yet to find out the answer to this question.

In any case, KANJI. On one hand I’m super happy that I can guess my way through without checking the dictionary. But on the other hand, this means that I tend to resist checking them up on the dictionary. Urm. It’s like you kinda know what it means, so there’s this temptation to just skip it and continue reading the novel. I’m trying hard to stop myself from doing that. Since I’m not going to learn if I don’t know how to read the Kanji properly in Japanese.

Also, it’s damn strange that I’m reading Japanese novels. I always find non-fiction easier to read for Korean and thought I’ll feel the same way about Japanese. But it’s so weird that I keep having the mentality that Japanese novels are easier to read than Japanese non-fiction. Is that true? hahahaha I don’t know!


Wrote the above a week ago! ^^

Feeling very happy about having another language in my life now but I think I need to balance them out properly. I have been totally neglecting Korean D: D: A little weird to say that, but I feel like taking a short break from Korean. No idea what sparked the (unconscious) decision but I do think that a short break is good. Not that I’m totally not doing anything Korean, just that I’m not actively studying the language.

I’m pretty sick of kpop in general so I’ve been happily listening to mostly Japanese music. (I will never get sick of my YG playlist though). My music taste for Japanese is a little different. Right now, I’m super into Amazarashi! ^^ And I’m reminded of how much I love anime songs from Shaman King!

Happy with my Japanese progress so far. On page 80 of the Japanese novel already!!! 😀 Numbers do not matter. Just feeling happy that I’m making a lot of progress and I can actually understand an adult Japanese novel ^_______^ Learning loads everyday.




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  • Reply
    8 April, 2013 at 9:04 PM

    haha I was a little confused when I read the first lines and you said you were on page 13, because I was like “Wait, I thought your last post said you were on 40??” But I read the rest and understood.
    Even as somebody who doesn’t have Chinese background, I find Japanese easier to read too with kanji. It’s actually one of the reasons that, if we’re speaking purely about the languages, that I like Japanese better than Korean 😀
    Some people may find kanji hard, but I really like it. Even if it takes some time to learn, it feels so worth it to me and makes reading in Japanese so much easier than reading in Korean.

    • Reply
      9 April, 2013 at 1:22 PM

      i love kanji too! <3 it's super hard to read Japanese with just hiragana >.<

  • Reply
    9 April, 2013 at 12:19 AM

    I think that makes sense. You know kanji, you got used to korean grammar which most people is more convoluted than japanese grammar ( not sure how this comparison is fares when it comes to literary stuff though)

    I’m not sure if looking up reading of all kanji compound words are worth your time. Even if you do that you might not remember it or you misremember it by one syllable or dakuten etc. but then again looking it up isn’t that hard or time consuming for you since you can just type it in chinese ( other japanese learners would have to look up by radicals or search by word ending with this kanji or word starting eth this kanji) Usually for me it’s more easily remembered when you hear the word and then see how it’s written ie talk variety shows and See how they write it and go there’s the onten or the reading is irregular. Japanese kanji reading is just mad irregular… I’m sure it’s even more apparent compared to mandarin but I don’t know mandarin.

    Rikaichan is really quick and helpful for readings but obviously limited to the computer.

    • Reply
      9 April, 2013 at 1:23 PM

      yes!!! totally agree that looking up kanji words is easy for me 😛 I’ll always toggle between the Japanese and Chinese keyboard 😛

  • Reply
    9 April, 2013 at 12:21 AM

    That’s why I think it’s important to listen to japanese a lot ( comprehensible input ) so u learn words that is made up of kanji that has a billion readings or possible sound changes (onten) … Just hearing it makes it memorable. Otherwise you read and look up and try to memorize the reading… There are patterns but sometimes it just feels like memorizing

    • Reply
      9 April, 2013 at 1:25 PM

      I do both reading and listening. Sometimes when I check out a Kanji word, I’ll be like “ohhh i remember hearing it before” and I’ll be able to connect the sounds and meaning and the kanji together. I don’t memorize when it comes to language learning so that’s not a problem for me ^^

  • Reply
    9 April, 2013 at 3:19 AM

    Do your novels have the Hiragana over the Kanji? I’m not sure how common that is in Japan… I guess its for children or something ?

    • Reply
      9 April, 2013 at 1:26 PM

      nope this novel doesn’t have the furigana except for a few words here and there (maybe the rarer words?)

  • Reply
    10 April, 2013 at 1:07 AM

    I think prior Kanji knowledge from Chinese is a big factor in your reading comprehension abilities. In fact I was playing a Japanese RPG today and I was surprised at how much I understood. I’d get that the game was talking about making prayers to some fire goddess even though I have no idea how to pronounce the Kanji lol. Too bad we have to deal with 訓読み in addition to 音読み :/

  • Reply
    10 April, 2013 at 6:48 AM

    Congrats on your progress, that’s so exciting! I’ve always enjoyed Haruki Murakami’s ( 村上春樹) books, though I read them in English.

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