Will a writers’ conference be a good idea?

Dear Agony Aunt or Ancle, no, Uncle,

Have you ever participated a writers’ conference?

I’ve been entertaining the idea of doing so for some time and I’m hopeful that finally I probably can some time this year or next. However, I have no idea which one would be the best fit in helping me publish the work.

Would there anyone that might be able to help me with ideas or suggestions as to which conference I should go to, or how I should be choosing?

 

The well in Bakin’s home as photographed in modern days. The source: a Wikipeadia page

 

From what I’ve gathered so far, Continue reading

The Greatest Opening of an Exciting Adventure Story

Every time someone starts reading from Episode 1 it always gives me a lot of pleasure and pain at the same time. It’s because I tell myself to rewrite the beginning part of it.

This is my humble opinion but I’m yet to be convinced that Bakin did justice to his own masterpiece by how he opened up Episode 1  – quite frankly, it’s not the most enticing opening I’ve ever read, nothing less than which the story deserves. Actually it’s probably not his fault. At least not entirely. Continue reading

Bangetu-tei the artist duo

Maybe quite a few of you have experienced this. Here at the Legend of the Eight Samurai Hounds too, as the blog expanded some contents were starting to sneak into places where they shouldn’t and as a result it became difficult to find what you wanted, so I’ve refreshed the menu.

One of the changes that made me really happy is that the acknowledgement section, which used to be a small potion of a page called ‘Notes’, has a page for itself under the ‘About’ tab. This way it shows a lot more appreciation to those who deserve. Besides, as the work progresses more people have helped me along the way and naturally there are more people to whom I want to express my gratitude.

The latest addition to the acknowledgements is Bangetu-tei who created the music in the clip displayed in Episode 5-2. The song’s called ‘Yoshitsune Senbon-zakura (Yoshitsune the Thousand Tree Cherry Blossoms)’ which comes from a Kabuki play. Minamoto no Yoshitsune is a twelfth-century warrior and  a famous Gen-ji, but more than anything else he’s one of Japan’s most favoured tragic heroes. Continue reading

Recently, I’ve begun to wonder

whether the title of this story should be ‘The Legends (plural) of the Eight Samurai Hounds’ rather than the singular ‘Legend’. As I proceed with translations there is a definite feel that the story really is a composition of numerous legends.

The original title:  南總里見八犬伝

*The kanji for 總 (soh) is often and usually replaced by the modern version: 総

Even back in the summer of 2015 when I was contemplating on a suitable title for the blog, I wasn’t totally sure of it. I dug up my notes: Continue reading

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog 5-2

Episode V-ii

Good captain declines intrigues and enlistees learn benevolence

Carrier pigeons deliver a message and the traitors offer a head

 

Courtesy of Ban Getu Tei by Yoshitate Kyounosuke & Fuyu

 

Previously…

While Sadakane, the enemy of all folk, was spending day and night partying, a strange looking army approached his castle and brought down one of his favourite warriors Sabitsuka Donpei. It was the wandering freelancer Kanamari Takayoshi coming back to avenge his former master. Sadakane listens on to the eyewitness’s account of the battle scene. Now the stage is set for Yoshizane’s ever-reliable lieutenant Horiuchi Krando Sadayuki. Coolness. Continue reading

Update notice

This month I’m planning to update mid-month as there has been a long period of no posts. My life’s relatively stable now or so I hope, after a year’s work towards attaining it, and this should allow me to update more regularly at least during the rest of year 2017. Will this strike you as boring or make you feel a kinship but I like routines, and  it feels so good to be able to go through the same procedures every day. Psychologists seem to think making choices is one of the greatest causes of stress, and I guess that’s one of the reasons I like routines, although they’ve also found that stress alone doesn’t make you ill unless you believe stress is bad for you. Anyway, about the life of routine, more relevantly, it will let me write more.

Writing a note for the upcoming episode Continue reading

Thank you and the best wishes for the coming year!

This year has been busier yet than the one before. While I admit I regret not having been able to update as regularly as before, I am filled with hopes that it will come gradually to that I will be able to in the coming year. I have been working and will continue to work to make that happen. My determination hasn’t waned a bit.

Continue reading

Notice

Finally, updated the menu to improve the ease of navigation. Should be able to reach each post in chronological order from Episode 1 using the dropdown menu at the top.  The navigation page has also been renewed and is linked to all the episodes posted so far. If you find anything missing or out of place tell me either in the comment or by emailing me at livingdaylightzz(a)gmail.com (replace (a) with @). Thanks!

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog

Episode 1. Suyemoto Dies an Opportune Death Leaving Guidance, The White Dragon Goes South through the Clouds

Episode 2-1. Assassins shoot arrows to slay the white horse, Evil vassal robs two counties and leans on the red gate

Episode 2-2.  Assassins shoot arrows to slay the white horse, Evil vassal robs two counties and leans on the red gate

Episode 3-1. Kagetsura and Nobutoki subtly sabotage Yoshizane, Ujimoto and Sadayuki comply with Tateyama at risk

Episode 3-2. Kagetsura and Nobutoki subtly sabotage Yoshizane, Ujimoto and Sadayuki comply with Tateyama at risk

Episode 3-3. Kagetsura and Nobutoki subtly sabotage Yoshizane, Ujimoto and Sadayuki comply with Tateyama at risk

Episode 4-1. In Ko-minato Yoshizane raises justic, In Kaki-no-uchi Takayoshi pursues vengeance

Episode 4-2. In Ko-minato Yoshizane raises justic, In Kaki-no-uchi Takayoshi pursues vengeance

Episode 4-3. In Ko-minato Yoshizane raises justic, In Kaki-no-uchi Takayoshi pursues vengeance

Episode 5-1. Good captain declines intrigues and enlistees learn benevolence, Carrier pigeons deliver a message and the traitors offer a head

Episode 5-2. Good captain declines intrigues and enlistees learn benevolence, Carrier pigeons deliver a message and the traitors offer a head

Notice

So sorry to keep you waiting! Just a few more days till I can post the next part. Some of the descriptions of the armour and weaponry took me aeons. It was tremendously interesting and enjoyable to learn though, and I’m hoping it’s helped me make the story more exciting. Did you know that samurai on campaign carried most of his supplies? That includes rations, clothing, glooming kit and bedding on top of all the weapons.

On another note, when I read Bakin’s descriptions of Yoshizane, I often get the feeling that he may be Bakin’s ideal samurai and son, who he ended up losing to illness.

Regrettably notice is becoming a regular feature of this blog now, though every month I’m hopeful maybe this time I can catch the deadline. Such an optimist I am, and I still hope that the next post will be worth your wait and be entertaining enough for you.

Finally, as always, thank you all so much for your patience and support!

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog 5-1

Episode V

 

Good captain declines intrigues and enlistees learn benevolence

Carrier pigeons deliver a message and the traitors offer a head

 

The emissary Yamashita Sakuza’emon-no-Joe Sadakane had sent to Maro and Anzai was now back to Takita.

“Those fellows didn’t explicitly say they would capitulate but were terribly intimidated. There is no doubt that before long both of them will pay a visit by themselves to repent their sins and be your highness’s subjects. The poor state of their affairs was such and such, this way and that way.” Continue reading

Notice

(>_<) So it’s going to be late again this month… with much regret. I’m hoping to post it this weekend. Here’s a sneak preview,

 

Episode V

Good captain declines intrigues and enlistees learn benevolence

Carrier pigeons deliver a message and the traitors offer a head

 

The emissary Yamashita Sakuza’emon-no-Joe Sadakane had sent to Maro and Anzai was now back to Takita.

“Those fellows didn’t explicitly say they would capitulate but were terribly intimidateted. There is no doubt that before long both of them will pay a visit by themselves to repent his sins and be your highness’s subject. Their poor state was such and such, this way and that way.”

 

Cheerio till then.

 

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Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog 4-3 (End of Episode 4)

Episode IV-iii

In Ko-minato Yoshizane raises justice

In Kaki-no-uchi Takayoshi pursues his vengeance

 

“Master Yoshizane, may we suggest a humble idea of ours? The county of Nagasa is delegated to Sadakane’s trusted retainer Shietage Kokuroku[1], who resides in the Castle of Tojo. It is not far from here. If you attack Kokuroku for a start, you will not only be equipped with armaments and food provisions but instantly have the whole county in your hand. It will give you much mobility in attacking Takita.” Continue reading

Notice

Thanks ever so much for generous support whether you’re a steadfast Hakkenden lover like me or just passing by! My other work, which I consider myself lucky to have, is taking up a bit too much time and attention than I expected, and consequently the next update will have to wait a while. I’d say in a couple of days or some time in the first week of the month Yoshizane and his comrades will get into action.  Cheerio and see you soon!

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog 4-2

Episode IV

In Ko-minato Yoshizane raises justice

In Kaki-no-uchi Takayoshi pursues vengeance

 

However, Yoshizane didn’t appear convinced.

“You speak too highly of me. Even though it is a great plan ‘tis hard for few to beat many adding to the fact that I’m a vagabond. What do I possess that should attract men? If three or four of us were to attack Takita Castle it’d be just like a praying mantis charging at a carriage with an axe. It’s hardly a match.”

To this reply Kanamari Hachiro drew closer on his knees. Continue reading

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog 4-1

Episode IV

In Ko-minato Yoshizane raises justice

In Kaki-no-uchi Takayoshi pursues vengeance

And so Yoshizane and his men were on the road trying this pond and that river, seeking waters and standing in rapids the whole day without returning to their inn in Shirahama. In the end they reached as far away as the river Shirahashi in the County of Nagasa and it was already the third day. As it was their last day their frustration reached its peak. They caught plenty of fish but no carp, not even one as tiny as a small crucian carp took a bite. Continue reading

Prologue: The Origin – The Prince, the Princess, and the Dog 3-3 (end of Episode 3)

Episode III-iii

Kagetsura and Nobutoki subtly sabotage Yoshizane

Ujimoto and Sadayuki comply with Tateyama at risk

 

Yoshizane smiled.

“Master Anzai, you’re quite correct. On the other hand, people talk. Ever since I arrived in this province the grapevine keeps telling me the one rumour. It’s one thing that folk will be critical of whatever you do, but it’s completely another when your own men will not let you hear of such criticisms nor reprove you themselves; can such an attitude be called loyalty? Even if Ujimoto and Sadayuki received an unexpectedly large sum of reward, they wouldn’t want to serve an unhearing master in the same camp as disloyal men.”

Kagetsura’s face changed colour at this.

“What slander is this?! What rumour are you talking about?”

Yoshizane stuck his fan on his lap.

“Are you not aware yet sir? This involves not just you but Master Maro also. The three families Jin’yo, Anzai, and Maro have been close collaborators for many years helping each other like their own hands and feet so that this country has long been peaceful, until now when Jin’yo’s best-loved servant Yamashita Sadakane harmed his master, instantly robbed him of the two counties and called himself the lord upon recommendation. Folk would naturally blame you if you didn’t crush the man for the sake of Jin’yo, unabashedly submitted to him and disgraced yourselves. My wish was to work like a horse with all my might for you if you ever took me up upon the information I provided, but it was all in vain and I don’t see any war preparation nor do you bring it up. There’s no place for my humble opinion. While you’re busy scrutinizing the courage of my men and me you’re not about to act on courage and justice to avenge Jin’yo. Such a samurai is no master of mine, and this is where we part. Let us take our leave.”

As soon as he uttered these words he made a move to leave, so Kagetsura called out to him in a hurry. Continue reading