🧛 Home Thread for Dracula Daily Read-Along 🦇

Welcome, one and all! We’ll be following along to Dracula Daily in this thread.

(Here are a few other language versions of Dracula daily for those who would like to subscribe to them. Please let me know if you find any others, and I’ll add them here!)

The book itself:

(Note that there are many, many different versions of Dracula; I’ve only picked a few already on Natively to feature here. You are not limited by just the ones I’ve posted!)

What’s Dracula Daily?
DD is a fun yearly event set up by Matt Kirkland, where he emails out chunks of Dracula to be read over a period of about 7 months. Dracula is written in an epistolary style, and each entry in the book is dated, allowing us to read along as the characters write.

This means that you may read a page of text on day XX, a paragraph the next day, then ten pages eight days after that. One benefit to this is that you get to follow along chronologically, as opposed to how the original book sometimes structures things. You also get to wait in suspense with characters as they wait or investigate.

What level would you recommend being to try this?
I’d recommend being comfortable with around level ~30 books, at least in Japanese. You can probably score some wiggle room depending on your own personal familiarity with Dracula and how the translator of your particular edition translated it, but somewhere around L30 should be a decent benchmark to gauge with. Here’s my review of the JP edition I read; please note this is only one of several translations, and difficulty will vary according to that.

What’s the best way to find where in the book the current day’s entry is?
It’s not usually too much trouble to find the current day’s entry; if reading in an ebook, it’s generally enough to search by date (though I have seen issues where the foreign language version typo’d the date), and for physical/if it’s not found on ebook for some reason, entries are generally grouped closely together by date anyway. You would just generally need to keep a close eye on if there’s a POV switch, because then that might indicate we’ve jumped to a different section of the book.

Any other thoughts?
The event runs from May 3 to November 7. You can jump in and out any time, and read how things work best for you. For example, last year I read about half in Japanese and half in English; I got to a point at the end of it all where I was way too busy to read the daily entry and be able to keep up, so I took that into account.

As a general note, you can generally expect entry length and density to be lighter in the earlier parts of the challenge, and heavier near the end. The last few months in particular I remember having quite a bit of text, and as mentioned above, sometimes had to swap languages if I wanted to keep up.

Will you be reading along when the club starts on May 3?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Maybe
  • I’ll be reading, but at my own pace
0 voters
What type of media will you be consuming the book as?
  • Physical
  • ebook
  • Audiobook
0 voters
What language will you be reading the book in?
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Another language
0 voters
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Hi all! So I’ve got a thread up; we won’t need to make a schedule this time around, as the nature of the read-along provides that schedule, but I still did have a few questions for participants:

How do we want to handle thread creation?
  • Let’s just keep all discussion in this one thread
  • Let’s make separate threads for each month
  • Some other alternative
0 voters

I probably won’t post here for every day there’s a new diary entry to be read (though I certainly can if enough request it); probably the best choice there would be to subscribe to Dracula Daily yourself, and from there a reminder will be sent to your email, then you can come post here when you’ve done your reading.

What’s the best way to find where in the book the current day’s entry is?
It’s not usually too much trouble to find the current day’s entry; if reading in an ebook, it’s generally enough to search by date (though I have seen issues where the foreign language version typo’d the date), and for physical/if it’s not found on ebook for some reason, entries are generally grouped closely together by date anyway. You would just generally need to keep a close eye on if there’s a POV switch, because then that might indicate we’ve jumped to a different section of the book.

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For anyone wanting to do this in Spanish, there’s another person that set up a similar website, Querido Draculario, so you don’t need to buy the book and you can just read it bit by bit through the daily emails! There’s also a Russian version.

I’m not sure if I’ll read it in Spanish, or go for Korean but with the children’s version instead. @bizoo , since you’re the only person to have read 드라큘라 | L26 here, how similar would you say it is to the structure of the original? Does it still follow an epistolary style?

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Oh, thank you so much for the links! I’ll definitely add those to the OP!

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드라큘라 | L26 is an abridged version of the story for kids. It does follow the diary/epistolary format but it’s missing a ton so wouldn’t work for a readalong. hilariously in the first chapter the writer literally writes into the text something like “the original author spent a long time describing his journey to the castle but we’re not gonna go into all that”.

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Okay, added a bit more info to the OP, and then realized I didn’t actually vote in any of my own polls, haha. I’m currently sitting on a “maybe” in terms of following along this year, insofar as I’m considering Spanish (tried last year and didn’t make it past week 1 or 2), especially with the Querido Draculario link @HopeWaterfall provided, and English, since I just like Dracula.

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Reminder that we’re only two days out; the poll for how we want to organize threads is currently tied, so if there’s no large movement on it we’ll just keep all discussion in this thread, since the number of participants is looking low.

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Was on the fence about joining with the Japanese version since I’m not great with L30 stuff yet, but I think at this pace I’ll give it a try! If the Japanese version ends up being too difficult for me right now I’ll switch to an English reread.

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Is there a way to do this, in particular the spanish version, without giving out an email address?

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If they follow the same pattern as the English version, then the sections should be posted on the website and then archived. But as this is the first time that this Spanish version will do it, I can’t tell for sure.

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Thanks, I’ll keep the web page open and hope for the best…

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I think this is a Japanese version (with fun graphics :bat: )

I’m not sure I’ll join though, I struggled to maintain the habit even with the English version last year :sweat_smile:
But maybe I’ll pop in occasionally.

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Oooh, thank you so much! I’ll add it to the OP!

3.5. (JP)
And so it begins. I am always amused at finding German (or other languages I know) in Katakana.

パプリカ・ヘンドル [Paprika Hendl]. :rofl: (Chicken (leg) in a paprika cream sauce with rice or spätzle or …; it’s delicious)
side note: when Dracula was written Hungary was still part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, so people knowing German was not unlikely.

Comparing the version I am reading with the online version, the translations are extremely different. Doesn’t change the meaning, but it’s interesting.

Just a very basic example:

my version:
「イギリスからおいでになったお方で?」

online version:
「旦那さん、あなたが英国のお人ですの」

Original:
“The Herr Englishman?”

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Interesting that they’re so different!

For the online version, under 奥付 , I believe the person who created the site did the translation. (under pseudoymn Hito HUMANO lol)

I did read the first online entry, and did stumble a bit around some of the formal words, e.g. 貴殿の友.

It sounds like maybe the site version is maybe putting on a bit more old fashioned-y flourish to it, do you think?

Also, there’s this calendar, if it’s helpful to anyone

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Yes, that’s the vibe I am getting from the online version. I thought it’s an aozora version but I didn’t check if aozora has one available. :sweat_smile:

Edit: the first full translation is from 1971, so unless the translator died within a couple of years of publication, it’s still under copyright.

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Day 1! It begins. :vampire:

I can confirm that Querido Draculario is posting the day’s entry with no need to sign up via e-mail. Here’s today’s, for example.

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I just read the first part, in Spanish, because why not. I’ve realized that I don’t actually know what this book is about at all, besides the obvious title. So that’s nice, plus, by the time I receive the simplified Korean version, I’ll already be a bit familiar with it.

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Opening up my Kindle copy of Dracula (Spanish Edition) Anotado | L30??, looks like I made it to May 24 before giving up last year. Here’s to getting farther this year. :muscle:

May 3, en español

Looking through all my highlights from last year for all the words I didn’t know, not much has changed this year, which isn’t all that surprising. I made flashcards out of most of them and have been studying them in advance, but I think my Spanish foundation is just too weak to easily learn and solidify a lot of words memorized sans much context.

On the other hand, however, my reading stamina is much improved, most likely due to the two other Spanish book clubs I’ve been a part of for a few weeks now. That, plus instant dictionary lookups, gives me hope for finishing Dracula this year.

For whatever reason Jonathan’s travelogue opening always kind of surprises me. No idea why, I’ve read this book twice already, but even now, opening it up and reading the first few paragraphs, my brain just goes, “huh. Oh yeah, the beginning is like this”. I do enjoy it, though; I feel like Dracula as a character in modern-day popular culture and the book Dracula are very different beasts, and I enjoy both of them for their own merits.

That was the same for me when I first read the book a few years ago along with Dracula Daily; I had an idea of the book in my head, but it turned out to be quite different than what I was imagining. I had tried reading the book once or twice before that, but never got past Jonathan’s section due to boredom, haha. Once I made my way through I ended up really enjoying it, though.

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I read this for the first time hiding under a blanket using a dying flashlight in the dead of winter. It was … atmospheric.

I should also warn you, I’m that schmuck in the back of class who watches the movie and thinks no one can tell … sadly, it turns out I’ve lost my copy of the 1931 spanish film, so you have a few days before I start quoting the movie by accident.

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