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  2. Actually wikipedia has a list of most common given names too. Just for curiosity I stripped out the duplicates: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_given_name 1 麗 Lì Pretty, Graceful 2 偉 Wěi Big, Great 3 芳 Fāng Fragrance, Virtue 4 秀英 Xiùyīng Outstanding Beauty, Elegant & Brave 5 娜 Nà Elegant 6 敏 Mǐn Quick, Clever 7 静 Jìng Peaceful, Tranquil 8 强 Qiáng Strong, Better 9 磊 Lěi Mound of Rocks, Great 10 军 Jūn Army 11 洋 Yáng Ocean 12 勇 Yǒng Brave 13 艳 Yàn Gorgeous 14 杰 Jié Outstanding, Heroic 15 娟 Juān Beautiful, Bewitching 16 涛 Tāo Large Wave 17 明 Míng Bright 18 超 Chāo Overleap, Surpass 19 秀兰 Xiùlán Beautiful Orchid, Elegant & Graceful 20 霞 Xiá Rosy Clouds, Mist 21 平 Píng Peaceful, Tranquil 22 刚 Gāng Hard, Strong 23 桂英 Guìyīng Laurel & Beautiful, Brave
  3. I don't know about the given names, but here's a list of 100 common last names. One of these characters + 1 or 2 characters after that is probably a name. After that is mostly stereotypes. As far as I can tell, male names often have various strength/patriotic/health connotation words (ala the author 王强), while female names have flowers, elegance or beauty type words (ala the tennis player 李娜), and may be doubled (like the actress 范冰冰). https://mandarinhouse.com/100-common-chinese-family-names 1. 李 Lǐ 2. 王 Wáng 3. 张 Zhāng 4. 刘 Liú 5. 陈 Chén 6. 杨 Yáng 7. 赵 Zhào 8. 黄 Huáng 9. 周 Zhōu 10. 吴 Wú 11. 徐 Xú 12. 孙 Sūn 13. 胡 Hú 14. 朱 Zhū 15. 高 Gāo 16. 林 Lín 17. 何 Hé 18. 郭 Guō 19. 马 Mǎ 20. 罗 Luó 21. 梁 Liáng 22. 宋 Sòng 23. 郑 Zhèng 24. 谢 Xiè 25. 韩 Hán 26. 唐 Táng 27. 冯 Féng 28. 于 Yú 29. 董 Dǒng 30. 萧 Xiāo 31. 程 Chéng 32. 曹 Cáo 33. 袁 Yuán 34. 邓 Dèng 35. 许 Xǔ 36. 傅 Fù 37. 沈 Shěn 38. 曾 Zēng 39. 彭 Péng 40. 吕 Lǚ 41. 苏 Sū 42. 卢 Lú 43. 蒋 Jiǎng 44. 蔡 Cài 45. 贾 Jiǎ 46. 丁 Dīng 47. 魏 Wèi 48. 薛 Xuē 49. 叶 Yè 50. 阎 Yán 51. 余 Yú 52. 潘 Pān 53. 杜 Dù 54. 戴 Dài 55. 夏 Xià 56. 钟 Zhōng 57. 汪 Wāng 58. 田 Tián 59. 任 Rén 60. 姜 Jiāng 61. 范 Fàn 62. 方 Fāng 63. 石 Shí 64. 姚 Yáo 65. 谭 Tán 66. 盛 Shèng 67. 邹 Zōu 68. 熊 Xióng 69. 金 Jīn 70. 陆 Lù 71. 郝 Hǎo 72. 孔 Kǒng 73. 白 Bái 74. 崔 Cuī 75. 康 Kāng 76. 毛 Máo 77. 邱 Qiū 78. 秦 Qín 79. 江 Jiāng 80. 史 Shǐ 81. 顾 Gù 82. 侯 Hóu 83. 邵 Shào 84. 孟 Mèng 85. 龙 Lóng 86. 万 Wàn 87. 段 Duàn 88. 章 Zhāng 89. 钱 Qián 90. 汤 Tāng 91. 尹 Yǐn 92. 黎 Lí 93. 易 Yì 94. 常 Cháng 95. 武 Wǔ 96. 乔 Qiáo 97. 贺 Hè 98. 赖 Lài 99. 龚 Gōng 100. 文 Wén
  4. I am still getting frustrated with Chinese names. Probably I will have to brute force them into my brain with Anki or Tofu learn... 😒 Do you guys have lists of characters used in proper names?
  5. Today
  6. 100k-300k length is perfect, although 耽美 wouldn't be my initial category of choice. Is there a good guide of what all the categories are? I'd start with something more generic, basic. The only category I know of is "Cultivation" which I've never read, but I gather it's the most stereotypical category of Chinese web novel (along with Time Travel and a modern person becoming a historical / game character). Also, it might be boring, but I'd probably start with the equivalent of a "classic" of this genre, something finished that everyone else has already read, and not too long. I know part of doing a guide like this is you want to expose people to more "new stuff," but being a normie tourist, it's easier to start with the common travel spots. Similarly, something that might have already been turned into a TV series or movie. Then I can watch as well, if I'm interested. I know fans often complain that a TV or movie adaption is terrible but it's fun for newcomers to see for themselves exactly why they're bad.
  7. phills

    Listening to Audiobooks

    Thanks! I listened to about an hour so far, and I can understand 60-70 percent of it. Enough not to get lost. I think I'll go through it slowly and use it as a benchmark to see how I'm improving over time BTW, I may be oversensitive, but is the female version an AI voice? It seems soooo even that I'm a bit suspicious. The timing and pronounciation on 语言 is exactly the same 7 times over in this 30 second segment, even though they appear in different parts of sentences. It just struck me as I listened to it. https://youtu.be/jT61CaChw68?t=3136
  8. Yeah, language learning is fun. I was baffled by the Japanese names for hydrogen (水素) and oxygen (酸素) until I learned they were borrowed from German, Wasserstoff 'water stuff' and Sauerstoff 'sour stuff' respectively.
  9. Ah, 々 is what I meant by the cross when I knew it really wasn't quite that - was tempted to say it looks a bit like the symbol used by the Scottish Nationalist Party but that's probably even more obscure (and it's actually not that similar!). I see it's described as “同”字的异体字.
  10. Publius

    Cursive - characters running together

    Yes, kind of like ditto mark (〃) in tabulation. This convention is kept well alive in Japanese even in print. It's so prevalent they treat iteration mark almost like kanji: 人々、神々、日々、時々、徐々、延々、堂々、凛々、度々、次々……
  11. There's that thing where you just do a couple of dots or a cross to show a repeated character, not sure if you count that. Found this example from brush calligraphy but you see it in biro too:
  12. Yesterday
  13. Jan Finster

    Extensive reading and reading speed

    field chicken 🤣🤣🤣 This is why I love Chinese.
  14. I'm not sure why anyone would write two versions of the same song, but in terms of using words with the same sounds but different tones, which sound "nominally" the same when sung but has sly differences in meanings when read, one song that comes to mind is 草泥马之歌.
  15. abcdefg

    tofu tasting like blue cheese - how to make?

    Yes, I'm afraid that's true. Thanks for your kind words!
  16. Thinking of them as “throat positions” might help with producing the sounds, but ultimately those “throat positions” are realized as pitch contours, and it's really just the vocal cords rather than any other part of the throat. You can see this by viewing a spectrogram of speech, though speech production is messy and inexact, and intonation also plays a large part, so the results won't map perfectly onto a 4-tone chart. In most styles of music, the use of the vocal cords to produce pitch is purely used for creating melody; alter the tightness of the vocal cords and you alter the pitch and thus the perceived melody. As with speech, you can see the changes in pitch using a spectrogram. If you use a typical mandopop song as input, you'll see the pitch changes map pretty closely to melody, but not at all to tone. If your pronunciation is otherwise perfect and very clear (clarity is often a problem in any style of singing in any language, not just Chinese), they'll probably get all or most of it, depending how simple and/or formulaic the lyrics are. What they won't be able to do is accurately distinguish between two words differentiated only by tone that are both equally plausible in context. However, such situations are relatively rare. By losing tone, you do lose some information, but it's usually not enough to make an utterance completely unintelligible, unless other information is also missing or corrupted (background noise, weird grammar or word choice, mouth is obstructed, other aspects of pronunciation are off, etc etc). Note also that absent tone information, as in singing, is much easier to understand than present but incorrect tone information. Wǒ ài nǐ > wo ai ni > wǒ ái ní (我挨泥? I suffer mud?)
  17. Webnovels does have that advantage, some have really short chapters. They're made for quick read everyday. I've read one that started at around 1.2-1.5k characters per chapter, she eventually increased it to 3k because I think people started complaining that it's too short. Though sometimes some authors prefer longer chapters, like the one I'm currently reading (撒野 by 巫哲), all the chapters are around 6-6.2k in length, it feels so long at times!
  18. I've been looking for occasions to use "penultimate" and "antepenultimate". 😂
  19. I'm definitely committed to using the word "crudluscious" in my vocabulary far more often!
  20. Yeah. It could be misspelled "hare".
  21. I may have encountered a different variety of 蛤蜊 from you, on my plate. Another variety of character I've encountered on my bookshelf is 蛤蚌. I will very occasionally see an English word like "here" and think - that can't be spelled right. Particularly if the word is just standing on its own.
  22. I think this is just really bad writing!
  23. 889

    Possibility of American citizens entering China

    Today's SCMP: "China’s zero-Covid border rules going nowhere this year"
  24. Sounds very manageable! Being used to 6-12k characters per chapter....
  25. My native language has very large differences between the spoken language and the literary language, so I was surprised to see this suggestion that written English is just like spoken English. But it seems it isn't that different after all. If U wanted to write English like U spoke it, it'd prolly look more somethin' like this. But would y'all really read Stephen Hunter if the whole book was like this?
  26. Publius

    Listening to Audiobooks

    Hmm, found two versions on YouTube. Male voice: https://youtu.be/zERp1IJ0R4U https://youtu.be/y0reERQe6zM Female voice: https://youtu.be/jT61CaChw68 https://youtu.be/-krMvR6HwAk
  27. Oh great, so we are with back to the English song lyrics problem (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7my5baoCVv8) 🙈
  28. After I wrote yesterday's post, I looked in my Kindle to see what the story was with best-seller type, non-literary fiction, and I was surprised to find this as the opening paragraph of a Stephen Hunter just-published thriller - showing that it's not just Henry James/Virginia Woolf tier literary stuff or older novels that are so unconversational: This is mainstream commercial fiction, not literary fiction. Not just the words but also the syntax is different from English conversation.
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