I’m a writer, tour guide, and travel consultant based in Tokyo. The adventures of furochan is my personal newsletter, and it’s been landing in inboxes since July 2018. It’s a monthly missive of introspective writing – immersive stories asking questions big and small, celebrating the small and large joys of life. Every dispatch includes a selection of reading recommendations, too.
Subscribing: What’s in it for you?
#1 Maybe you just want to know more about eating and traveling in Japan. Signing up gives you a free food guide PDF – illustrated by my sister! – collating all my restaurant reviews and eating itineraries across Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka. Think of it as a cheat sheet to eating affordably and deliciously in these cities. Stay on for the monthly clippings.
#2 I am quite enamoured of old-fashioned correspondence. Maybe you are, too. There are some sentiments that can only breathe freely on paper, some emotions better declared in a letter, some trains of thought best meandered through in paragraphs rather than conversations. Short of sending you written missives in the post, this is the next-best digital version.
#3 Every newsletter gives you a handful of links to the most thought-provoking essays I read that month, plus one or two books. The deluge of reading out there is pretty overwhelming, so I pare it down for you to the ones I found most interesting.
No topic is off-limits; I love reading across fields. Literature, stillness, nature, working culture, tech, financial scandals, science, politics, art, anthropology, sex, sexuality, travel. All I ask of these writings is that they illuminate our minds in some way, and I hope they do the same for you.
#4 Maybe you just want to read more non-white writing outside of North America or the UK. If so, I totally tick your diversity boxes.
What readers have said
“Furo-chan's newsletter is something to look forward to at any time. You'll never know what's coming - coffee or bike-rides, or an introduction to neighborhood flowers - but that's what makes it an adventure. Like all adventures, it's best to just jump in feet-first and enjoy the journey.” – Alice X.
“I love your newsletters and I hope you make them all into a book.” – Stephanie W.
“One of my absolute favourite things is to wake up on a Saturday, make myself some good pour over coffee, and read your newsletters cuddled next to a window. I save them up and devour them on the weekend. I think it’s a treat since it feels like a combination visit with you and also insights on your travels and thoughtful stories that get me out of my head. At any rate had been meaning to tell you how much I honestly enjoy and savour them.” – Noel D.
“She makes getting her ears pierced at Sungai Wang sound glamorous.” – Sarah C.
Free vs. Paid Subscriptions
I began this with the intention of writing to friends in far-flung places, as a way of finding readers while ensconced in Japan. A year on, it continues to be one of the most rewarding things I do every month – it is consistently mind-blowing that people take the time to read what I write, and it is something I am profoundly grateful for.
These monthly dispatches will always remain free, and you are welcome to remain on the free list. But as a labour of love, these newsletters take considerable resources to produce every month, and I hope to take them in more interesting and ambitious directions as time goes on.
If you do choose to make a paid subscription, you’ll be helping this newsletter remain sustainable, and also play a direct part in helping me and my writing grow. The aim has always been to find readers to connect with, a personal, intimate readership like friends in a living room, without having to rely on large media publications. I’d love to skip the middleman and find readers like you instead.
So, if you’ve been reading for a while and you like what I do every month, I would love it if you considered contributing USD$5 a month (the minimum Substack allows) or a discounted USD$50 annually. Whether or not you choose to do this, though, please know that I’m glad and grateful that you’ve chosen to read my newsletters.
Other ways to support this newsletter
・If you love what you read but can’t subscribe at this time, you can always buy me a cup of digital coffee here, in any currency you like. Coffee keeps the writing juices flowing: paypal.me/floryleow
・Send emails and issues you liked to friends and family, and ask them to sign up at furochan.substack.com! I’m always super grateful for new readers and subscribers. It’s kind of like meeting kindred spirits, which is a very Anne-of-Green-Gables sort of thing to say, but it’s true.
・Write a line or paragraph of recommendation for this newsletter – and I’ll add them to this page. Kind of like testimonials for Friendster but way better. (Who remembers that, anyway?)
・If you have articles, essays, brand or profile descriptions, website copy, travelogues, or even – gasp – a book you want written, please do reach out. Respond to a newsletter to let me know!
How often will I receive your newsletter?
These go out to your inboxes once a month, at the minimum.
I’m not receiving your newsletter!
Please check your spam or Promotions folder, and when you find it, mark it as important. That should fix the issue, but if it doesn’t, email me and we’ll figure it out.
Can I share these newsletters?
Please do disseminate free posts as often as you like! An honest recommendation means a lot when seeking readers. Thank you <3
Here’s an idea for you – book recommendation, assignment…
I love hearing from readers, and I love ideas that might add joy or direction to life. Please don’t hesitate to reach out, either in the comments section or by directly replying to a newsletter – even if you just want to say hello.
You’re still reading! I hope this means you might join me for these newsletters. As I always think – it’s like finding another kindred spirit out there.