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Reaching 1000 characters?


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After reaching the first 650 characters I find it extremely hard to add another 400 to finish the first 1000. Most of my free time is spent relearning the characters I have forgotten, using Anki. And this only includes meaning, no pronunciation. It seems like an endless battle we are destined to lose. Comments!?

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Learning how to write them might make them easier to remember.  It will take time initially but will pay dividends in the long run.


Interestingly, 650 characters was about when I stopped keeping count of how many characters I know.

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Hi! Back in 2015 I was also battling with the characters. At first, I focused exclusively on one thing: Remembering how to write the character when given only a Spanish keyword, using Heisig's books. I also used Anki for reviews. I wrote about my experiences here in Spanish, in case you want to read (you can use Google Translate, too):



Almost everything I'd like to tell you is already written in this article:



To this, I'dd add:


1) Make sure you really understand the meaning of the character before attempting to memorize how to write it. Use Pleco, Yellow bridge, Outlier, Baidu images, anything to make sure of this. 


2) Make sure you understand the stroke order, and get it right from the start. There's a series of articles in the "can if I want" blog here in Chinese forums. Read it now.


3) Accept that this commitment might take several hours per day. Make a clear, realistic, sustainable study calendar for yourself and stick to it. Reaching milestones during a 3,000 character journey is very rewarding. I'm attaching an image of the calendar I used back in 2015. You'll see I had two colums: After reaching 1,000 keyword-to-writing characters, I started to also study pronunciations. You might want to wait a bit more to start this.


EDIT: I must add that during all this journey, I was actually reading Chinese almost every day, albeit very, very slowly, and only with the help of Pleco's web reader as a crutch. But I kept at it anyway!


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18 minutes ago, i__forget said:

I am learning from a book that contains the first 2300 characters. The first part of the book is only the first 1000 characters. I don't know how to write the characters I learned , I can just recognize them.


It depends how much you see these characters away from Anki. If you only see them in Anki, then really, they are only a set of squiggly lines that have no meaning.


With 650, you might as well start reading more.

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i would also recommend using Heisig's books along with anki. 

it's not only the way he breaks down how to make effective mnemonics, it's also the order he uses that is very effective in helping you remember and disambiguate them from each other.

i did it this way and learned 3000 characters' meaning writing and pronounciation in about a year.

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