Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

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smallwhite
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby smallwhite » Wed Jul 19, 2017 1:32 pm

blaurebell wrote:What's so special about complaining after months of drudgery?

Nothing! It's great because you're telling me a lot about Russian! I was just wondering why:
smallwhite wrote:
blaurebell wrote:... the Russian case system is definitely much more confusing than... Vocabulary might be a little harder with Russian too...

You seem to find Russian much, much harder than everyone else on the internet and on this forum, and you're just at reading. Could it be your method? Or the books?

You gradually found one reason, your using books harder than other people's, and I'll bear that in mind. The rest of your messages about how hard Russian is, how the language is harder than Cat IV Greek and the journey tougher than Cat V Japanese, I read with interest as I'm considering learning it. Not many people write so much so detailedly about the difficulty of Russian.
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:11 pm

Have you seen these charts?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_declension

Nouns, adjectives, pronouns and numerals are declined in three genders and six cases. This is more than enough to make my head spin.
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby Arnaud » Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:06 pm

jeff_lindqvist wrote:Have you seen these charts?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_declension

Nouns, adjectives, pronouns and numerals are declined in three genders and six cases. This is more than enough to make my head spin.

No more impressive than the french conjugations table 8-)
I mean nobody learns these kind of tables by heart, you learn them little by little, one tense or case at a time, then you train with exercices, etc...
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smallwhite
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby smallwhite » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:35 am

jeff_lindqvist wrote:Have you seen these charts?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_declension

Nouns, adjectives, pronouns and numerals are declined in three genders and six cases. This is more than enough to make my head spin.

Cat II German makes my head spin already with just 3 x 4 :(
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:04 am

Russian

I’m now 96% into the book and will probably finish it today. I wanted to try to finish it yesterday, but in the end I was just talking to my brother for a long while, so that didn’t happen. My brother actually reads a lot of Russian stuff in translation, so he gave me quite a few book recommendations, which I have put on the list. No idea whether I can get my hands on them - getting Russian books over here is really expensive and if it’s not available as an epub it’s basically impossible to find. But well, I’m not quite there yet anyway, about 4500 pages of translations left before I try my hand at some of the difficult stuff he was suggesting.

Spanish

I’m 78% into GdUdE B and the lessons are getting longer. I’m through all the subjunctive exercises and I would say that they helped quite a bit. It’s much clearer to me now when I have to use a subjunctive and when not, but well, I still find past tense subjunctives rather uncomfortable and wouldn’t use them on the fly while speaking. I definitely need more practice. I have also been reading my Piglia book which feels definitely uncomfortable too. It refers to lots of history I’m not familiar with and my reading comprehension has always been a bit more wobbly with Spanish. That alone means that I’m taking a bit longer with the book than I would have liked and that I’m actually not finding it overly enjoyable. The book itself is really interesting though! I can’t wait to finally finish with my Russian binge-reading challenge so that I can spend a bit of time with Spanish in LWT.

Also, remember the camera I wanted to get as a reward for when I finish FSI? For this one I actually need different parts that are all more or less expensive: a bigger film processing tank with specific spools, film holders, a new lens that has enough coverage for large format and the camera itself, which has to be either imported from the US or bought over there directly. We’re actually planning to travel to Memphis next year, so I might try to buy it there, but well, my health isn’t too predictable, so I’ll have to see how that works out. In any case, so as to split up the expense I have started getting the parts together now after a friend of mine pointed me to a really good deal for the film processing tank. I simply jumped on it because it was half the price. I was feeling a little guilty for jumping on it before having finished FSI, but then I realised that FSI has 4 volumes and I already finished one of them! What a coincidence that I need 4 different parts and that there are 4 volumes! So, I can split up the expense, and give myself a little more incentive to keep advancing. I haven’t really done any FSI lately because I’ve been reading too much in Russian. I didn’t want to add another source of strain, but I’ll continue it once I’m through with my Russian reading challenge.

French

I haven’t done any French for about a week, which irritates me. After the Piglia book I’ll definitely go back to reading in French. I did however watch the Suite française movie, which was quite alright - not in French though. Also, here comes a really strange coincidence: Totally independently of my own interest my brother also discovered Némirovsky recently and sent me two of her books. One of them I already had, so I was a bit confused, but then realised that my brother must have sent it. The other book I didn’t even notice, because I had ordered so many Némirovsky books, that it just didn’t stand out. I thought that I had ordered it myself! I actually already read it and enjoyed it a lot. He recommended a couple more books by her, that I haven’t yet read, so I might just continue on my Némirovsky reading spree.

Italian

I’m still watching TNG in Italian. It’s still fun and I pretty much don’t have any problems understanding it at all. Something funny: There are a few sentences of French in one of the episodes from the first season that stood out for me this time. I have seen TNG about 4-5 times already and I never understood these sentences before. Funny that exactly the French sentences stand out to me, when I’m watching it in Italian.

General

I have been keeping track of my hours and somehow they were going down and down although my health is reasonably alright and I’m pretty motivated. Then I realised what the problem was: I’m procrastinating again. Since most of the stuff I did the last few months were pretty low intensity - watching stuff, reading stuff in languages I enjoy, no more than 1-2h of straining activity, I simply wasn’t procrastinating much. Well, now that I’m on my Russian binge-reading challenge, finally, I’m actually subconsciously trying to avoid it, because it is still a strain. So, the forum and Facebook suddenly started to take up much more time. Normally I have enough restraint to simply do stuff and don’t waste so much time on checking Facebook every 5 minutes, but that obviously doesn’t work when I’m trying to avoid stuff. So, I actually installed a browser extension that only allows me 20min of Forum and Facebook until 6pm. This way I at least procrastinate with TL TV or radio rather than things that aren’t really productive. I will keep the extension activated until I’m through with my Russian reading challenge and then I should have less reasons to procrastinate again.
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby Arnaud » Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:10 am

blaurebell wrote: My brother actually reads a lot of Russian stuff in translation, so he gave me quite a few book recommendations, which I have put on the list. No idea whether I can get my hands on them - getting Russian books over here is really expensive and if it’s not available as an epub it’s basically impossible to find. But well, I’m not quite there yet anyway, about 4500 pages of translations left before I try my hand at some of the difficult stuff he was suggesting.

- There are tons of lists everywhere, but nonetheless I'd be interested to see yours.

- For paper books, I use two options: ozon.ru et momox (on the amazon market place)
Ozon.ru is very reliable, you just have to double the price to take into account the shipping costs to europe (they are indicated in your basket, anyway) and be patient if you use the cheap shipping costs: from 15 to 30 days of waiting (there is also the option of making a big order shipped by DHL in a few days, but I never used it). Your bank will take a fee for the convertion rouble/euro (usually one euro, if your order is not big)
- On momox, you can find super cheap 2nd hand books: 1 or 2 euros for 500pages books in pristine condition: add 3 euros for the shipping costs, and that's it. The problem is to find the books in the amazon search engine: the cyrillic doesn't work and you have to try different kind of transliterations sometimes. Momox is good for classics and sci-fi/detective pulps, less good for contemporary literature.
The problem with russian paper books is that some cheap editions are printed on newspapers paper: grey, thin, almost transparent paper that becomes yellow and brittle in a few months: it's better to avoid these editions that are not agreable to read (better to read on an electroninc device). So before buying, always read the comments: usually people indicate the quality of the paper, of the printing, etc: it's very common to read that in the comments of ozon.
- For epubs, you can go on litres.ru (usually 2 or 3 euros by book+ 1 euro you bank will take for the rouble/euro conversion): I used it once and it worked well, nothing complicated. Otherwise, the "free" sources of russian epubs (or fb2 that is the common russian format) are very impressive and complete, you can find almost anything...
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:05 am

@Arnaud: Thanks for all the good suggestions! Once I get my LWT to 85% known vs unknown I might try to get my hands on some paper books then! I only knew of a couple of shops in Germany that import books and they tend to be really unreliable. My mum used them once or twice and always ended up sending stuff back because they sent the wrong book or things like that.
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:44 am

Russian

I have finished my second book in Russian: Девид Эддингс - Владычица магии (the second book of David Eddings' Belgariad Saga). The book is about 300 pages long and I almost doubled my known word form count with it. Right now my database looks like this: 13,313 known word forms, 25,540 total word forms, 52.1% known vs unknown ratio. This makes for 4757 words learned in 210h, which isn't half bad. With Anki I needed about 50h to learn 1200 words and this doesn't include the time I actually spent creating the cards. And with LWT I'm also seeing lots of real life grammar and I'm reading actual books meant for native speakers. So, in the end LWT turns out more efficient for me. The known vs unknown ratio is also finally moving. It was 47% throughout the first book and stayed there fore the whole book, but with the second book there is finally some movement in the right direction. This means that the number of new words is slowly going down now. My goal is 85% known vs unknown and that will still take a while. For the second book I needed 82.26h and 16.45min per page. This is still slower than my first book in French, for which I needed only 9min per page. I'm catching up though and maybe the next book will get me to a more reasonable reading speed, where I can enjoy reading a little more. Total pages read: 573!

The next book I will be reading is the third book of the Belgariad saga: Девид Эддингс - В поисках камня. This one only has 250 pages, so it should be a bit quicker in general. These books always start with a prologue that is somewhat more old-fashioned in style, so the 28% unknown words on the first page probably shouldn't discourage me. It's only 6 pages long and then it should go down to more reasonable measures. Still, isn't it frustrating to still find pages of 28% unknown words after more than 500 pages? Oh Russian, why do you have to be so difficult?

General

Health went to hell again. I wonder whether there is a connection to Russian learning, since my health always tanks when I'm doing more Russian. Maybe it causes me some sort of stress? But then, it might just be a coincidence and it's just stress from a gazillion other sources. We're in the middle of paperwork and lots of mad planning for travel, so that might be more of a source of worry. In any case, I won't be pushing anymore or trying to do so many hours a day. If it's 1h it's fine, if it's 5h also fine. I'm making good progress anyway.

It really annoys me that I've been ill for 10 years and it's never getting any better. How annoying to always have to take it easy and behave like an invalid. Also 10 years of super strict diet and my health still tanks unpredictably. I'm so sick of it! Whenever this happens I wonder whether I should really just give up all my grand plans and accept the bitter reality: I'm too ill to reach my goals. But then, could I live with not even trying? I don't think so. I won't let myself get discouraged!
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: 8 / 72 Duolingo reverse Spanish -> German

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Re:

Postby Morgana » Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:16 am

Last edited by Morgana on Sun Nov 26, 2017 11:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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blaurebell
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:06 am

Morgana wrote:I have to say with your Anki vs. intensive reading stats and words learned, even if LWT weren't more efficient, I can imagine it'd still be preferable simply for the fact it's more enjoyable and you're much likelier to stick to it, no? There's definitely advantages to enjoying something. Though it's pretty great when it turns out to be the more efficient option anyway!


I have to say that this may only apply for me though. Since anki isn't fun for me it's probably less efficient and effective for me than it would be for other people who get a kick out of it. Maybe other people would only have needed 20h to learn those 1200 words with Anki because they love it and I needed 50h because I hated it. There is no way to know. Other people hate to read intensively (or in general) and for them Anki is probably easier to keep up.

Morgana wrote:That's so frustrating re: your health. It's frustrating enough to be constantly managing health to the degree we do, and then a flare-up of symptoms happens anyway. And always fighting the temptation to just "be normal" and not worry so much, because if we let go we always, always pay for it. You're very inspirational, staying the course even when it's tough. I'm sure you're doing your best to maintain that balance, to get this latest flare-up under control. You absolutely can strive for those goals. If there's anything I've learned through my own struggles, it's that it might be harder, and I might need a few (or a lot) of accommodations or adjustments to be made, I might need more breaks, and therefore take longer... But I can get to where it is I want to go. You're pretty much proving you can as well


Thank you for your encouraging words! To be honest, most of what I have achieved I actually managed after becoming ill, so I have a lot of experience struggling through setbacks like this. Things often take longer than I would hope, but in the end I usually reach my goals or even surpass them. It just needs some discipline and the right mindset to continue even when things are tough. So far I can say that I have reached every goal I ever set myself, simply because I'm stubborn. It might not always be easy and maybe it would sometimes have been more sensible to give up, but well, that's just not who I am! That said, I should probably get out of the habit of setting myself goals that people who aren't ill would find impossible to achieve :D
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: 20 / 100 Дэвид Эддингс - В поисках камня
: 14325 / 35000 LWT Known

: 17 / 55 FSI Spanish Basic
: 100 / 116 GdUdE B
: 8 / 72 Duolingo reverse Spanish -> German


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