When Shikitei was about 20 years old he made up his mind to become a writer. He was influenced by Zenko Shiba, a novelist. Kyan Taiheiki Muko Hachimaki, one of his early works offended firemen in Tokyo. His home was destroyed by angry firemen and he was punished by the Shogunate with handcuffing for 50 days. The incident made him famous.
A shorttempered man who became rowdy when intoxicated, he was always on bad terms with Eakin Takarai, famous novelist.
Among his various works, the most well-known and well written were Ukiyodoko and Ukiyoburo, which are masterieces of realism and humor. They descnbe Edo people of various dames who gather at a barber's and a public bathhouse. His other works include Tatsumi-Fugen and Raitaro-Goaku-Monogatari.
Besides writing, he sold Sempo-Enjutan, a patent medicine, and Edo-no-Mizu, a skin lotion, and made big profits.
Samba was also a good calligrapher and painter.
He married the daughter of Tajiemon Yorozuya, a book dealer, and became his heir but left that famiiy after his wife died.