Tag: working in Tokyo

Freelancing in Tokyo: Get Paid On Time!

Posted by David Chester on 6 May 2011

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Tori gates

For those of you who have read my book, you will be familiar with my comments about "Getting Paid On Time." Because I continue to encounter a strange attitude from certain agents about paying talent on time, I feel I must again write about this issue. 

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Freelancing in Tokyo: Post-quake (or not)

Posted by David Chester on 15 April 2011

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Japanese Tea and Dessert
I felt like I needed to see a calming image, and what could be more gentle than two cups of green tea and a plate of kuzumochi?

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Freelancing in Tokyo: Learning How to Gaman

Posted by David Chester on 15 March 2011

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Koi in a Fountain
As most of you know, a major earthquake hit Japan on March 11. For those of us living in Tokyo, things are changing moment by moment. This is a difficult time for many and the focus of FIT in the coming months will be about surviving and keeping people aware of what's happening here and how I have handled challenging situations having to do with my jobs. That is the best way for me to share with you what is going on, by making it personal.

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Freelancing in Tokyo: Bootstraps or Heelstraps: Pick Yourself Up

Posted by David Chester on 27 August 2010

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Jindai Park Flowers
For those of us roughing it out in Tokyo this summer, we've exchanged stories of how "tough" it is: Jobs being canceled, not enough work coming in, phones not ringing. Yes, it is true; things slow down in August in Japan as everyone flees the heat. But for those of you who braved it and who may be surviving by your wits, I say: Go a step farther.

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Write-ups are welcome

Posted by David Chester on 22 February 2010

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David reading FITIt's always nice for a Westerner to be acknowledged in Tokyo, especially when it's by one of the top English-language infozines in town. Metropolis magazine was kind enough to do a mini-write-up about my BooksNote event at Good Day Books in Ebisu this coming Sunday night. And, perhaps even nicer, was having peers stop me on the street, with the magazine in their hand, look up and say, "Hey! I just saw you in the magazine!" 

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Create Your World

Posted by David Chester on 15 February 2010

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Japanese roomThe month of February in Tokyo is notoriously slow for freelancers. It seems that everyone starts has gone into hibernation and your phone will literally stop ringing. I admit, it can be tough, and it always takes me by surprise.

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Dreams Can Come True

Posted by David Chester on 2 February 2010

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David at the FCCJWhen I first came to Tokyo 16 years ago the thought that I could be a journalist was the farthest thing from my mind. I couldn't conceive of it. But eventually, and through a freelance opportunity, journalistic work came my way. I am not sure why, but it never occurred to me that I could be a member of that august organization, the Foreign Correspondents'  Club of Japan, better known as FCCJ.

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Face Time

Posted by David Chester on 21 January 2010

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One of the most important things in your FIT adventure is "face time." It's easy to underestimate this essential part of working in Japan, but it's a mistake to do so. It's true we live in a whirlwind of texting, email, ichat, etc., but showing up and making clear to a client how important they are and how much you'd like to work for them is common sense anywhere... even more so in Japan. In my experience, it's what has made the positive difference in my freelancing work flow in Tokyo.

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Strange Bedfellows in Tokyo

Posted by David Chester on 17 January 2010

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Skyscrapers near ShimbashiOne of the great things about living in Tokyo is that it makes strange bedfellows of all Westerners -- and some Japanese. It seems unlikely that had I stayed in Los Angeles that I would have been one of two people being interviewed at a media event... the other person being Yukie Kito, one of the producers of the critically acclaimed filmTokyo Sonata. But that is one of the joys of living here. You can start off an English teacher, and end up rubbing shoulders with elite entertainment professionals. Just another day as a freelancer in Tokyo!

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Welcome to FIT!

Posted by David Chester on 3 December 2009

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Tokyo TowerWelcome to the FIT site! The journey of FIT from a simple email request from an acquaintance on how to find work in Tokyo to a full-fledged book was an arduous one, but extremely worthwhile. Also, the evolution of the FIT website has been an illuminating experience and I want to thank all the artists at Media Contour for the incredible job they've done and continue to do.  

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