FW-51 -- Books: Keeping Informed and Entertained (Frugally)in Japan

* * * * * * * F R U G A L W A T C H * * * * * * * *
A weekly roundup of how to be frugal in the world's most
expensive country to live (unless you read this!), written
and compiled by Wendy J. Imura.

Regular edition, April 4, 2005 Issue No. 51

- What's New (Books: Keeping Informed and Entertained (Frugally)in Japan)
- Event Notice: (Being-A-Broad Clothing Swap)
- Frugal Tips (Wrapping Supplies)
- Credits

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============ Setting up a Company ================
Entrepreneur's Handbook Seminar in OSAKA!

Terrie Lloyd, founder of over 12 start-up companies in
Japan, will be giving an English-language seminar and Q&A on
starting up a company in Japan. This is an ideal
opportunity to find out what is involved, and to ask
specific questions that are not normally answered in
business books. All material is Japan-focused.
* Date: 8 April, Friday, 9:30 a.m.
* Location: AA Hall, Kitahama, Osaka
* Cost: JPY15,000 paid in advance JPY20,000 at the door
Email seminar@japaninc.com for details and to register.
======== AMT Group's Development ============
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Does everyone know where you are going and why? Perhaps they
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The April edition of Andrew's Ax shows how Territory Mapping
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For a free subscription, e-mail Ax@amt-group.com before
April 10. You can also click on the AMT Group website "Read
Andrew's Ax" for back issues, in both English and Japanese.



Dear Frugal Readers,

I am a bookworm. I'll admit it: I have four bookshelves, jam
packed, in my office alone. My home has another few. I love
books, and frequently purge my collection to make room
for new ones. I love recycling books too. Books, in short, are
one (relatively) cheap way of escaping the reality of Japan
every once in a while - something I think everyone needs to
do from time to time. So today, I thought I'd relay a few hints
for getting books (and getting rid of them) cheaply in Japan.

My first tip is BookCrossing (www.bookcrossing.com). What is
bookcrossing? According to the Concise English Dictionary,
"the practice of leaving a book in a public place to be picked
up and read by others, who then do likewise." If you've ever
left a magazine or book in an airline seat pocket, cafe, beauty
salon, or other place, then you've done a bookcrossing. I have
frequently done this, with no idea as to where the books went
after that. BookCrossing picks up from that, and lets you
"register" your book with a printable bookplate before you
"release" it. Once you release it, you enter "release notes"
at the web site, and whoever finds the book can pick it up
again and "track it." You can see who has read your books! It
seems, altogether, pretty interesting. Why not try it and see?

Another good place to purchase used English books is Good
Day Books, a bit of a Tokyo institution. As one FrugalJapan
tipster notes: "Good Day Books sells used (and also new) books.
And -- with certain rules -- they accept used books for credit.
They're very near Ebisu Station on the JR Yamanote line in
central Tokyo. Their phone number is (03) 5421-0957. You can bring
in used books at certain times on certain days. For any book that is
accepted, you're given credit (not cash). You can use part or all of
this credit in paying for further used-book purchases there -- the
same day, or within one year from that day. Also, this credit is
transferable; you can give (or even sell) your credit to somebody
else." Check out www.gooddaybooks.com for more information on this
great resource. Some large Japanese regional cities may also have
one or two small used English bookshops: check local
English-language publications for information.

Got a Japanese partner, in-law, or friend with WAY too many Japanese
books, magazines, or manga? Then try BookOff. BookOff will usually
pay 10% of the cover price for Japanese-language books in good
condition, and will even contract a service to come out to your home
to pick up the books (50 or more items). Check out the following
websites for more information:
www.bookoff.co.jp and http://www.bookoff.co.jp/sell/takuhon/index.html.
(Japanese only)

Finally, libraries and private exchanges are another way to
frugally give, and receive, English language books. Central
libraries in large cities often have a decent English language
section (ask for 'yosho' or foreign books), although the
choices are usually heavily slanted towards academic or classic
titles. Smaller libraries will sometimes gladly accept donations
of paperbacks, as will international schools. Private exchanges
among a group of friends are also a great way of getting new
English reading material, particularly for young children.

Interested in more frugal book tips? Visit FrugalJapan.com's
April 2005 Tip Collection at: http://www.frugaljapan.com/tips/books.html


Frugally yours,
Wendy J. Imura

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+++ EVENT NOTICE: Being-A-Broad Clothing Swap!

I'm not usually in the business of publicizing events, but I
couldn't resist informing everyone about this one. I think
it's a great idea! Women-only, sorry!

Back by popular demand, bursting closets and an urge for spring
cleaning is the second "Your Clothes Friend" clothing swap!

Too many clothes and too little room? Tired of wearing the same
thing to work every week? Want to donate clothes and money to a
good cause but are unsure of where to go? Come and swap with
me! Bring your clean clothes that you no longer want to the cafe,
add them to the pile of treasures and feel free to try on and
take as many items there as you like!

The last event in December generated several bags of clothing
for donation and every one of the 65 women went home with
something new for their wardrobe. If you don't like something
in your closet, don't hesitate to bring it along to the swap!

All season items will be accepted but should be in clean,
functional condition. Style is a matter of opinion!

Sunday, April 17th at Cozmos Cafe in Shibuya from 3-6pm.
Entrance is 2,000 yen, including one drink, and a 500-yen bar
list will be available. A map for Cozmos can be found here:

Remaining clothing will be donated to the Salvation Army,
Saalaa Women's shelter, and Goonj (a charity based in India).
I also welcome any charity or embassy in need of clothing
to contact me for clothing donations. Money raised from
the door will go to Oxfam Japan, HELP (a Tokyo- based
women's shelter), and the Red Cross (tsunami victims).

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+++ FRUGAL TIPS (Wrapping Supplies)
There are a few ways to save money on wrapping supplies
(for presents and other packages) in Japan. The first, and
cheapest way, is recycling: nice tissue paper, ribbons, boxes,
and gift bags. These can usually be reused if stored carefully.
100-yen shops also can be a source of great deals for
small-volume wrapping. Their seasonal selections (Christmas,
Valentines' Day) are also quite good. Finally, a great, and
simple way, to wrap purchased gifts is to inquire about free
wrapping at the store itself. Presents wrapped in department
store-motif paper are, in fact, the height of class in a
brand-conscious society.
== Entrepreneur Association of Tokyo - April Seminar =
Official Book Launch Seminar - "Saying Yes to Japan - How
Outsiders Are Reviving a Trillion Dollar Services Market."
This April 5th Carl Kay, Tokyo-based Entrepreneur & author
will discuss the book he co-authored with Tim Clark.
Books will be available for purchase at the seminar.
Date/Time: Tuesday, April 5th 7:00 pm
Location: City Club of Tokyo - Maple Room (Canadian Embassy
Language: English
Website: http://www.ea-tokyo.com
Email: info@ea-tokyo.com
Subscribers: 816 as of April 4, 2005

Written by: Wendy J. Imura (frugalwatch@japaninc.com)
Edited by: JI

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