Category Archives: translation

Science Fiction novella released: “Two of Six” (A Captain’s Dilemma) by Tomohito Moriyama (森山智仁)

In mid-June I released an English translation of the first part of an intriguing Japanese SF novella that I had discovered titled “Two of Six: A Captain’s Dilemma” (Japanese title: “6分の2”), written by Tomohito Moriyama (森山智仁). The story involves a system malfunction on a spaceship requiring evacuation of the humans aboard, but the escape pod… Read More »

Alternative responses to “arigatou” (thank you) in Japanese besides “dou itashimashite” (you’re welcome)

Emphasis on manners and politeness is one of the key characteristics of both Japanese culture as well as an integral part of the language itself Beginners generally start with basic phrases like “ありがとう” (arigatou), “ごめん” (gomen), and “どういたしまして” (dou itashimashite), but eventually learn better ways to express themselves in a variety of situations. In this… Read More »

Japanese Word Highlight: 超訳 (chouyaku), the “extreme translation”

Recently when I was reading a book with explanations of old Japanese (for example a Matsuo Bashō poem from over 300 years ago), I came across the word 超訳 (pronounced ‘chouyaku’). I had never seen this word before, despite having prepared this vocabulary list which included a few terms about translation. While the word was not… Read More »

The Making of an Ebook: “Classic Japanese Fairy Tales”

Recently I released the book “Classic Japanese Fairy Tales”, a set of English translations of several short stories by Mimei Ogawa, one of the founding authors of Japanese children’s literature. (You can find the original release post here, or direct Amazon link here) In this post I’d like to give some information about how I made… Read More »

Bilingual book of classic Japanese fairy tales released (Mimei Ogawa: The Father of Modern Japanese Fairy Tales)

After doing translations of Japanese fiction for over two years now, I’ve gradually moved from the stage of just putting translations on my blog informally to releasing them in E-book form on Amazon. My first two books were translations of a classic SF Japanese author (Juza Unno), and while that was a great experience, for… Read More »

Notable Japanese word: “Shikumi” (仕組み / しくみ) and some ways to translate it

When learning a foreign language you sometimes come across words that, while mostly translatable on a case-by-case basis, are hard to translate literally to your native language (English in my case) such that all its nuances are carried over. If you can understand the ins and outs of these words you can even make them… Read More »

Japanese SF Novella translation: “Two of Six: A Captain’s Dilemma” by Tomohito Moriyama [Chapter 1, Part 1]

I’m always on the lookout for great Japanese works of fiction that I can translate in order for English-speakers to appreciate them as much as I did. The other day I came across one such work, the SF novella “Two of Six: A Captain’s Dilemma” (original title “6分の2”)by Tomohito Moriyama (森山智仁). I was fortunate enough… Read More »

The mystery of public domain, and getting rights to publish works

For those wanting to get their feet wet in translation, public domain works (those who copyright has expired) are great since they are not only legally, freely available, but translations of them can (potentially) be published without having to get permission from the work’s original author. For those translating from Japanese, Aozora Bunko (青空文庫) is… 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 »

Promising Translators 2018 Entry Feedback: Kisetsu’s translation of “Morning” (by Osamu Dazai)

As a bonus to those who have participated in STJ’s first translation contest, Promising Translators 2018, I have offered to give feedback on the entries. This is the third post where I will give such feedback (this is the first, this the second). Please be aware that much of what I will say in these posts… Read More »