About Me

Hello! My name is Seth. Here’s some information about me that you might find interesting while you browse this website’s contents.

Japanese Studies

I fell in love with Japanese in high school when I had to switch languages after there was a scheduling mishap with my Spanish class. From the first day of class I was fascinated by how differently Japanese grammar structure works from English.

After a year in college with no language classes I decided I wanted Japanese back in my life. I studied abroad at Osaka University for one year and received a B.A. in Japanese Studies from UC San Diego.

Five years later I traveled to Argentina and realized I remembered none of the Spanish I had learned in school. But I did remember a ton of Japanese! Unfortunately, it didn’t help when communicating with the locals. I ordered some books on kanji and rededicated myself to my studies.

For the past many years I have made Japanese studying a part of my daily life. Whether it’s going through a native source like a novel, or reading a workbook aimed at learners of the language, I love picking up new ways to express myself in Japanese. There’s no greater feeling of accomplishment than returning to material that once stumped me and not only understanding the words, but grasping the underlying emotions being communicated.

Translation Philosophy

My biggest goal when translating is to convey the same feeling in English that the author was trying to communicate in Japanese. This ultimately means that what you read on this website in English are thoughts filtered through two people’s minds, both the original author’s and mine. If you’re also a bilingual speaker and believe I have missed the boat on a translation, I’m always open to hearing from you.


I’m a big fan of well crafted tools. Journals, particularly the ones produced by Japanese companies like Hobonichi, are beautiful ways to externalize the otherwise internal process of thinking. The 5 Year Techo is five years of your life in the form of a beautifully bound book. The daily quotes, taken mostly from interviews with accomplished Japanese artists, serve both as an inspiration and a reminder that we all struggle with the same creative challenges.