The Story Behind My Book, Urawaza


I’m really bad at self-promotion and publicity and all that blah blah, but I think it’s time to remind you guys that if you haven’t already, you should buy my new book, Urawaza: Secret Everyday Tips and Tricks from Japan. It’s a great gift idea for a birthday or Memorial Day or a very belated Mother’s Day. Basically, I researched over 100 weird tricks—like how to clear your sinuses using scallions or how to run faster using rubber bands—and wrote up real-world scenarios of when you might need them, and scientific explanations on why they work. My publisher, Chronicle Books, did a great job with the design—it’s like a pretty miniature coffee table book.

The first time I wrote about the urawaza phenomenon was in the October 2006 issue of Wired. That was back when TokyoMango was just a month old! One of my editors at Wired, Rob Capps, had been watching these strange YouTube videos at work, and I did a little research and found out it was from a Japanese TV show. Hence the magazine story, and then a Chronicle editor contacted me, and here we are.

In the intro, I write about how the concept of urawaza evolved from being gamer geek lingo to a more universal household term. I also tell stories about getting in trouble in grade school and an important lesson my mom taught me in adulthood.

Curious? You can get it on Amazon. And I’ll make sure I tell you guys when my next book signing is. (I did one at Maker Faire, but I forgot to write about it. Did I tell you I was bad at this publicity stuff?)

2 thoughts on “The Story Behind My Book, Urawaza

  1. I bought two! For serious, sight unseen I bought two as gifts for my JA gal friend and my Japanese teacher.
    I’ll have to borrow my friend’s when she’s done with it.