Tag Archives: literature

Commentary (解説): One of the Joys of Japanese Literature

Reading Japanese literature in its original language has a few perks. First, you have access to a huge number of works that have not been translated yet, many of which may never be translated. Also, reading untranslated text allows you to pick up nuances which would difficult––if not impossible––to translate, although skiled translators can use… Read More »

Japanese Novel Review: 天使の卵 (Angel’s Egg) by 村山由佳 (Yuka Murayama)

After getting a recommendation for the Japanese fiction novel 天使の卵 (“Angel’s Egg” or “Angel Egg”) by 村山由佳 (Yuka Murayama), I decided to give it a shot. The book turned out to be a very rewarding read, so in this post I’ll review it. This book is about the experiences of the 19-year old male narrator,… Read More »

The making of “Tales of the Disturbed” (Japanese classic literature translation)

I recently announced my latest ebook “Tales of the Disturbed”, and in this article I’d like to talk a little more about the process involved in producing the book. To be honest, I don’t remember where I first discovered the author Yoshio Toyoshima (豊島与志雄, Japanese wikipedia page). I do know that it took a few… Read More »

Book release: “Tales of the Disturbed” (classic Japanese fiction by Yoshio Toyoshima)

I’m very pleased to announce my latest book, “Tales of the Disturbed,” has just been released on Amazon. This book contains my translations of several short stories by the classic Japanese author Yoshio Toyoshima (1890-1955), all which are appearing the first time in English. Whereas my other books have all been about science fiction or… Read More »

Japanese book review: “文藝年鑑” (Literature Yearbook) [an important guide for acquiring rights to publish Japanese works]

In the process of researching how to obtain official legal permission to translate and publish certain Japanese authors, I discovered the book “文藝年鑑” (bungei nenkan), which can be translated as “Literature Yearbook”. In this post I’d like to review this important reference guide, especially useful to translators and those deeply interested in Japanese literature. (By… Read More »

Japanese literature review: “Utopia” (ユートピア) by Kanae Minato (湊かなえ)

On a recent trip to Japan (which I am in the process of reporting on here), I browsed through many bookstores. Because my reading speed in Japanese still hasn’t quite caught up to my English reading speed, rather than actually read a few pages of a book I generally focus on searching for covers and… Read More »

Japanese Literature Review: 「猫を抱いて象と泳ぐ」 (Swim With an Elephant, Embracing a Cat) by 小川洋子 (Yoko Ogawa): A nostalgic ode to chess

Yoko Ogawa (小川洋子) is an award-winning Japanese author who has written over 30 works, with at least eight of them translated into English so far. She is perhaps most known for her novel “The Housekeeper and the Professor” (博士の愛した数式) which was also made into a movie. I read Ogawa’s book “Little Bird” (ことり) last year… 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 »

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 »