Category Archives: General

The expression「お茶はどう?」 (“ocha wa dou?”) and the vagueness of the Japanese language

When compared to English, Japanese can sometimes seem like a language filled with vagueness. Not only are subjects often omitted, but sometimes particles are too, and to make things even more confusing there is less verb tenses (there is no future tense). To be sure, Japanese has it own ways to help clarify the meaning… Read More »

Japanese literary expression:「〜かのように」 (~ka no you ni)

If you read enough books in Japanese you’ll start to come across certain expressions and grammatical patterns that are used frequently in certain genres. In this post, I’d like to go over the expression 「〜かのように」 (~ka no you ni) which I’ve found to be pretty common in Japanese literature. Before I discuss the pattern itself… Read More »

Be a better translator: 10 tips to take you to the next level

Here are some tips to help you take your translation skills to the next level: 1. Develop your language sense Your sense of language, for both the source and target languages, is one of the core things that drives the quality of your translations. 2. Read often Reading from a diverse set of authors (again for… Read More »

Winners Announced for Promising Translators 2018 translation contest

The winners have been determined for STF’s first translation contest, “Promising Translators 2018,” and will be announced in this post. (See this page for more details about the contest.) The Winners The first place winner for the contest is Living Daylightz, whose excellent rendition of a small portion of the classic Edo-period tale “The Legend of the… Read More »

Introducing Mr. Mizuhiro Kaimai (開米瑞浩), diagram wizard

The other day I had the luck of finding out about Mr. Mizuhiro Kaimai (開米瑞浩) when he left a comment on one of my blog posts and introduced me to a section of his blog where he talks about “Japanese Grammar in Logic Diagramming”. In this series of articles, Mr. Kaimai discusses several aspects of Japanese… Read More »

Japanese short story highlight: Yoko Ogawa’s “Hexagonal Room” (6角形の小部屋)

Since reading (and reviewing) Yoko Ogawa (小川洋子)’s novel “Little Bird” (小鳥), I’ve been interested in exploring more of what this unique author has to offer. Just today I came across an audio narration of one of her short stories called  “Hexagonal Room” (6角形の小部屋)here on Youtube, apparently from a radio talkshow. (Make sure you start listening… Read More »

Less than one day left for submissions to “Promising Translators 2018”!

A few weeks ago I announced “Promising Translators 2018”, Self Taught Japanese’s first ever translation contest, a Japanese to English fiction translation contest targeting amateur translators. The winner will receive a monetary prize, and there be other prizes given as well. This post is a reminder for those who are interested since there is less… Read More »

Two days left for submissions to “Promising Translators 2018”

A few weeks ago I announced “Promising Translators 2018”, Self Taught Japanese’s first ever translation contest, a Japanese to English fiction translation contest targeting amateur translators. The winner will receive a monetary prize, and there be other prizes given as well. This post is a reminder for those who are interested since there is only… Read More »

Bilingual Japanese books at Reajer.com available now for free

In October 2016, I reviewed the site Reajer.com which produces bilingual Japanese/English E-books with detailed explanations, across a wide range of levels from beginner to advanced. It turns out that the maintainer of the site and creator of these books (Dan) has decided to make nearly all of these E-books free for the public, without requiring… Read More »