Writing Japanese

I wrote a really long post for my Japanese blog today; about 2000 characters. The rough-and-ready conversion is that two Japanese characters equal one English word. Certainly, the number of times you have to hit the keys is around there. Thus, the Japanese post is about equivalent to 1000 words of English.

It took me a little over an hour to write. 1000 words an hour is what I reckon for my average productivity in English, although I can get up as high as 2500 when I don’t really need to think about what I’m writing. (Hmm, that must mean that I can type 40 wpm.) What that means is that my speed of writing in Japanese is very close to my speed of writing in English. Frankly, I find that deeply surprising. My reading is much slower, I think. (Although I may be using the wrong metric; Japanese is denser on the page, so I probably should be reading fewer pages-per-minute in Japanese than in English. That, however, I don’t yet have a good conversion for.)

I guess this post comes down to me gloating about my Japanese ability. Comments from people who read Japanese criticising the quality of the Japanese on my blog will not be welcome.

Hmm. I know! I’m not really gloating. I’m trying to encourage people who are still studying Japanese at the moment. Keep it up for long enough, and you will actually get good at it. It just takes longer than you might initially think. (I still remember my initial plan – go to Japan for a year to get from JLPT level 3 to fluent. Three and a half years after arriving, I think I can actually describe myself as fluent. It only took three times longer than I expected.)






4 responses to “Writing Japanese”

  1. Mum - Alison Chart-Key avatar
    Mum – Alison Chart-Key

    A bonus – two in a few days! Printing out seems to include the side panel printed before the article.

  2. Sheila avatar

    Glad to know you have done so well. I appreciate the encouragement, although my one hour a week with hardly any homework means I will never get near your level!

  3. Jonathan avatar

    I appreciate the encouragement. For me, it comes at a good time as well since I feel that I’m in a bit of a slump in terms of Japanese growth. It’s pretty frustrating, to be honest, but I’m doing my best to soldier through it. Seeing you, a former student of my school, doing so well helps, I think.

  4. David Chart avatar
    David Chart

    Ooh, lots of comments. Thank you.

    Jonathan: Been there, done that. Soldiering on is the only way to tackle it, I think. Good luck!

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