Yes, there’s a reason my twitter stream suddenly went from chatter about Japanese to sporadic complaints about how tired I am: I’m pregnant! I’ve known since mid-August, but the chance of miscarriage drops off significantly after twelve weeks, so I wanted to keep it quiet until then (although at least one person did guess from my tweets, it seems). So far things are normal, but as it turns out, what’s “normal” in the first trimester can actually be pretty weird – I’ve been exhausted, horrendously nauseous and have developed aversions to food, prenatal vitamins, toothpaste and other useful things. Even better, I’ve had trouble concentrating on anything more challenging than “Dancing With The Stars” (yes, seriously) and so Japanese – along with most of the rest of my life – has been right out. Glory hallelujah, the first trimester weirdness is supposed to fade in the second trimester, and I have indeed been feeling better recently.
So I’ve been hitting the baby books, but I miss Japanese, and I’m feeling alert enough to read at least a little bit this month! I got another glorious package of books from Emmie the other day, and it includes some from my favorite series and some that I’ve been dying to read for months (or even years, for a couple of them). I’m most excited about some of the タイムスリップ探偵団 series, which is apparently some sort of time-travel detective series for kids around 4th or 5th grade where a group of kids encounters famous personages from Japanese history. They’re more complex than other books I’ve read so far, so I’ll have to work up to them with a little Zorori first.
Happy reading, everyone!
- Extensive reading is known as 多読, or tadoku in Japanese. To try it, start with very easy books (ones with no more than two or three unknown words per page), and follow these principles:
1. Don’t look up words in the dictionary while reading.
2. Skip over parts you don’t understand.
3. If you aren’t enjoying one book, toss it aside and get another.
Find something to read!
Hundreds of free books and stories online
Local bookstores and libraries
Buying new and used books online
For more information, read "What Is Extensive Reading?" and "Classification System."
To learn more about Kunihide Sakai, who developed the three principles of tadoku and has worked to popularize it in Japan for years, read this interview with him.
Finally, for more than you ever wanted to know about why I believe extensive reading is worth your time, read my tadoku manifesto.
Superfluous StatsBooks read: 303
Word count (since starting the blog): 380,500
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