ご無沙汰しています！ I was in the Japan Times last week and this week looking at correspondence, letters and emails respectively:
“‘Tis the season for ‘tegami’ — and for facing your Japanese letter-writing fears”
“To email in Japanese, take a layer cake of etiquette and stuff it with meaning.”
There is so much more I have to say about both of these topics that I couldn’t squeeze into the articles and unfortunately I don’t have time to write at greater length at the moment, but I do want to point out (sadly) how useful ご無沙汰 (gobusata) is as a potential correspondent.
I’ve known how to use this phrase for a while but was not familiar with the origin, so I looked for Yahoo Chiebukuro (of course), and it has a straightforward post that seems to make sense with some of the Japanese dictionaries that I’ve checked against – 沙汰 became news, notification, report, and 無 reflected a lack of such reportage, thus, “I apologize for not being in touch.” This post has a useful explanation of the difference with 久しぶり and also introduces the cool word 音沙汰 (otosata) as well as a few set ways to use ご無沙汰.
I hate to post and run, but I’ll have to get into further details in the future.
取り急ぎ (Another phrase I wanted to introduce!)