Looking for short non-H non-anime readings (12)

1 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-02-22 11:32 ID:Bh6foe3K

I am looking for recommendations of short Japanese primary literature (e.g. Sunday paper comics) for a JLPT Level 2-3 (somewhere in between) student to read. I already own Japanese manga and light novels and find the former takes too long to read and the latter even more so. I am looking for something much more accessible to a time-constrained medical student.

Long Explanation: Since Autumn 2001, I have enjoyed hentai doujinshi. From Autumn 2004 to Summer 2007, I formally studied Japanese as a university student. I realized very early on that my use of hentai doujinshi for erotic purposes served the dual-purpose of also exposing me to Japanese orthography, grammar, and vocabulary; and that many of the things I learned in school were to be found in these doujins. In other words, every time I read a hentai doujin for erotic purposes, I also got re-exposed to the Japanese language. It was a strong factor in my learning Japanese and I believe that it played a significant role in why I was at the top of my class for three straight years alongside students who were actually majoring in Japanese.

For the past year, I have no longer been a formal student of Japanese; however, I have continued to read H-doujinshi daily and it has served me well in reinforcing the grammar, vocabulary, and kanji I learned in college. In that sense, hentai has become a crucial aspect of my life, because it is my sole method for retaining my grasp over Japanese. If I did not have hentai, I would not be using Japanese much at all, and I fear that I would lose it very quickly.

In my efforts to curb what I believe to be my addiction to sex, I am trying to limit the number of times I read hentai doujinshi from twice a day to once a week. I am currently on the first cycle of that goal (it's been 71 hours since I last looked at any hentai), but I am already recognizing a possible danger -- the danger of getting rusty with Japanese.

Here is what I would like ideally: Japanese primary literature that can be read by a JLPT Intermediate Level student and which is not sexual or anime-related in nature. I'm thinking things like:

  • the Japanese equivalent of Penny-Arcade
  • the Japanese equivalent of Peanuts comics or Cavin & Hobbes comics

2 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-02-22 11:32 ID:Bh6foe3K

I would like something which is serialized and has many printings already out because I find that serialized works are more accessible for 30 minutes a day than trying to stumble through something like a light novel. The best way I can express it is, "What would you read if you were on the bus for 10 minutes and had to finish the entire thing in that time window?" Because that's what I am working with here: a general lack of time, with only 30-45 minutes tops to maintain reading the language each day. I do love Japanese, but I am also a full-time medical student, so I do not have the time to commit to studying Japanese the way someone getting their master's degree in it would. For me, I need to find something which is already accessible at my level (requiring minimal use of a dictionary) and which can be read in 5 to 15 minutes. Comics, children's books (but not books for babies!), that sort of thing. I think the Crayon Shin-chan comics would be a good idea of what I'm looking for, except that author's humor was not for me, so I would appreciate additional recommendations.

What I am also interested in is finding out if there are any groups out there who softsub J-drama or anime using Japanese subs. I would totally be up for watching 30 minutes of Minami-ke raw, but I think it would be even more beneficial if I could read subs along with it. This is a pretty bizarre request, I know, since most people would either just watch it raw or would want to watch it with subs in their own language. Still, I hope you understand my situation and can help to point me in the right direction.

I know that iichan is an imageboard first and foremost, but believe me when I say: you guys are my #1 hope. I am asking for the same help elsewhere, but I do not expect anyone to be able to help me at those places. This is the only place I think I may get a helpful answer. So please, before you say "tl;dr" or flame me for asking a question similar to what others have asked in other threads, think of my situation and have a little heart. I'm a fellow lover of the Japanese language, just like you; and I am trying to take the steps in my life necessary to extract my daily reading of Japanese from my daily perusal of hentai.


3 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-02-27 16:24 ID:1QnRBR1E

So are you looking for 4koma series that haven't been animated?

4 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-07 11:50 ID:YLMB5ZL9

Whether they've been animated or not doesn't matter too much, but I suppose non-animated would be better since I wouldn't even have the temptation to check out the anime version.

I ordered all four volumes of Minami-ke about two weeks ago, but they're not set to arrive until the end of March. In the meantime, I have been looking at hentai daily, but I'd like to cut it down to maybe once every other day ASAP.

5 あぼーん

6 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-11 22:50 ID:Heaven

Distilling your posts: basically, you want Japanese material at your level, right? You want to get better and learn new things now and again, but also want to feel the joy of reading.

You mentioned light novels, and they take too long to read... here's the thing: not all works of a particular type are equal.
If you can already read a light novel at a stretch, then just search around until you find something that's a bit easier - just below your threshold. No need go and get elementary school level stuff, or 4koma manga (which IMHO the latter would be shitty for learning anyway).

Taking ADV games for example (because it's what I read most), there are works which I read perfectly naturally and only consult the dictionary once in a while. And then there are others, which you wouldn't guess from the subject matter or box or anything, that I find frustratingly laborious to read and always end up quitting and putting off till later. Both these types aimed at the same age group.

If you're not into ADV, I'm sure the same goes for light novels (though I only own a few myself).
Full Metal Panic, for example, is easier to read than Haruhi, and tonnes easier to read than Marimite.

Given how long you have been studying you should be able to tackle stuff aimed at teens at least, it's just a case of finding the right piece that uses mostly standard grammar and overlaps with your vocabulary.

Keep in mind too that the first few 10s of pages are usually the hardest at your level. Different writers have different words they like to use in various situations, and of course the setting of the work will have its own vocabulary. You'll see lots of new expressions and words for basic stuff that you've already learned another similar word for. Once you get over that hump, reading gets a lot easier. So don't give up on a novel for being too hard until you're about 20 pages in or so... if it still doesn't feel like it's getting any easier then look for something else.

7 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-14 04:42 ID:n1XKz+za

Hmm. Indeed, I own several of the Haruhi light novels, and I find the dialogue to be just fine but Kyon's narration is unbearably advanced for me (both the kanji and the vocabulary used). Every now and then I might read a paragraph of his narration without consulting the dictionary, but it's a rare, rare event. Because of that, the novels just gather dust on my bookshelf.

I've never heard of ADV games before. Looking it up, it sounds a lot like the text-based RPGs of the 1980s. Cool. Any suggestions? Know of any freeware or open-source ones that were good?

8 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-15 07:24 ID:Heaven

You can find tons of free games on Vector. But be careful, sometimes you get what you pay for.

9 名前: 6 : 2008-03-15 20:24 ID:Heaven


Hmm, free I'm not sure about - I've been playing mostly commercial games. The only thing I've experienced personally on that front has been Narcissu: http://stage-nana.sakura.ne.jp/down.htm . Download the naru2.lzh, it also has the first game included. Writing wise it's quite accessible (but with some dense parts), so try it and see.

You could always look on torrent sites. I don't usually endorse that kind of thing, but it's hard to drop $80 on a game you don't even know if you can read or not. The first game I played from start to finish that was really like a novel in game form was Kanon, which has easy to follow language IMO. Since it's quite notorious in the west it should be easy to track down.

10 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-16 05:34 ID:yiAaITn6

How do you play a Vector game with English OS?
Most free Japanese games do not work on English windows (with/without applocate.)

11 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-16 07:04 ID:Heaven

If you're using 2000/XP/Vista, just change your language settings to Japanese in the control panel. I swear to God this works.

If you're using 9x, then get 2000/XP/Vista. Get with the times, man.

12 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-17 11:20 ID:Heaven

As a software engineer, I find it rather hard to make software which fails so hard on another locale, and thus I tip my hat to Japanese developers who seem to do a very good job of this.

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