Letters inspire book on life in Japan

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CSI Media News staff | March 21, 2014

As a junior in college, Anne Celano Frohna spent a year in England. From there, she worked in rural Japan for two years as an assistant English teacher for Japan's Ministry of Education, and then spent a year in Italy as a nanny and family chef.

Returning to the United States, Celano Frohna began writing and editing for several publications in Walworth County, but never forgot the experiences she had abroad.

She's compiled the most memorable of those experiences in her new book, "Just West of the Midwest: Chronicles of a Blonde in Rural Japan," which chronicles those two years she spent living in Japan during the early 1990s.

"The project (began) about 22 years ago, when I found myself with ample amounts of idle time while employed by Japan's Ministry of Education in the farming town of Shintomi on the southern island of Kyushu," Celano Frohna wrote in a news release promoting the book.

"With time on my hands, I began sending a no-holds-barred newsletter to my oldest and dearest girlfriends."

What began as simple letters home soon turned into a public journal of what she describes as her strange, sometimes brazen, ever-intrepid and incredibly beautiful experiences as a 28- year-old foreign female living in rural Japan.

"It's a story of second families and cultural intricacies, ancient mountain festivals and strange cities by the sea, the follies of youth and the good fortune of good friends to share in the adventures."

Celano Frohna used Smashwords, a publisher of indie ebooks, for the project.

Read the complete story HERE.

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