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Inside The Manga Industry with Felipe Smith, American Mangaka


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Merxamers



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 513
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:41 am Reply with quote
Very interesting interview, looking forward to part 2
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Chiyosuke



Joined: 06 Oct 2003
Posts: 267
Location: Nashville, TN (I was Kurious)
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:52 am Reply with quote
Aaaaaye! Never new Felipe was a brotha. I've learned quite a bit from this interview, hope to read more later on down the line, especially with all the recent discussion about the treatment of assistants in Japan (some of which he already touched on).
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Hellfish



Joined: 19 Dec 2007
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Location: Mexico
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:09 pm Reply with quote
I am always game for a new interview with Felipe Smith, I really like his works Very Happy Very Happy
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classicalzawa
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Joined: 19 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:46 pm Reply with quote
I had a lot of fun reading this interview! I've read Peepo Choo myself and quite enjoyed it, so seeing more of how something would come to actually be in a magazine and the work involved is fascinating for me. I have no dreams of flying to Japan to become a mangaka myself, thankfully (things like extreme fear of flying and lack of any drawing ability don't help), but I do like insight into how series are made. I feel like it's usually easier to get this info on anime, but not as much on manga. And Smith pointing out that the Japanese tend to be a lot more roundabout (even with stuff like marriage proposals *fondly remembers that scene from Yuri on Ice*) makes getting an interview from someone straightforward on the matter really cool.
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#861208



Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:42 am Reply with quote
I wonder if it would be possible for a non-Japanese to get published, not necessarily in manga, but in the anime sphere in general (e.g. light novels, writing for games or anime, etc.) with a story that isn't "LOL LOOK IT'S A GAIJIN". I know of a few English-language books that have been translated with illustrations in Japan, one of which got a manga adaptation (a really good manga adaptation serialized in Shonen Sunday, drawn by a Japanese artist), and one where the author was interviewed alongside several Japanese authors for a book about the genre, in Japanese. (Since the last one is in my genre (non-real-world-setting BL), that gives me a nice amount of hope.)

The author of the book that got the manga adaptation hasn't said anything, to my knowledge, about his awareness/fondness for anime and manga beforehand, but the other two books I'm thinking of, the authors are definitely anime fans.

(That's obviously not counting the classic British novels that were adapted by Ghibli, like Howl's Moving Castle. That's just classics, The Borrowers even more so.)

I think that getting known through the doujin route might be a worthwhile path (meaning self-pubbed, not meaning fanfic), especially with media that isn't 100% manga, and... I feel like especially in a genre like BL, or anything slow-paced... my current plan is to self-pub online in English, and then find a way to get it translated and self-pub online in Japanese, as well as tabling at Comitia and events like that...

(This is, of course, assuming you have Japanese skills.)
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Kadmos1
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Joined: 08 May 2014
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:50 am Reply with quote
Felip said:
Quote:
Other than myself, I've not heard of another American working as a mangaka – creating, writing and drawing an original series for a Japanese publisher.

All of the above is a dream for many Americans. One thing that could get them noticed is perhaps not using the "American-style" manga but the traditional shounen or shoujo art style.
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Whis-pur



Joined: 26 Jul 2015
Posts: 91
PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 10:11 am Reply with quote
Really enjoyed this interview. Been a fan of Felipe Smith since his Ghost Rider run (so underrated). Will look forward to Wednesday.
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Eddy564



Joined: 14 Sep 2008
Posts: 129
PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 3:23 pm Reply with quote
I absolutely love delving into the dynamics of mangaka life and culture. Especially from someone who has an intricate perspective from both sides of the spectrum. Fascinating interview. Makes me want to check out some of his prior works.
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
Posts: 515
Location: Gahanna, Ohio
PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 7:24 pm Reply with quote
Watch me have the worst taste out of everyone in this thread:

I think the big-breasted catgirl on the cover of MBQ is cute, and after flipping through the first volume of Peepo Choo at my university library I wanted to punch almost every character in the face just by the looks on said faces alone.
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Joe Carpenter



Joined: 29 Oct 2011
Posts: 486
PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 11:40 pm Reply with quote
Thanks for reminding me I still need to read PEEPO CHOO.

I also like how many years it took me to realize the title is a play on "pee and poo" and "Pikachu" Razz
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samuelp



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 2007
Location: Tokyo, Japan
PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:01 am Reply with quote
Quote:
Forecasting Japanese manga audience responses, publisher expectations, interpersonal relationships, and the navigation of a very traditional, historically homogenous society as a multicultural, multiracial foreigner who's fluent in Japanese was less “culture shock upon arrival” and more “culture beat-down throughout the duration!” [Laughs]

I think the parts where Felipe talks about "culture shock" really hit home in a certain way.
10 years ago when I moved to Japan I also didn't have any real shock as I was also pretty conversant in the language when I came.
It's actually pretty rare, but for people like us who are good enough with the language to avoid "shock" but at the same time we see far more about what's going on, so there's a slow burn of the deep differences in culture and interpersonal relationships.
It's especially true for a foreigner who works in a traditional Japanese company and attempts to really integrate themselves.
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Nazca Lily #837256



Joined: 01 May 2015
Posts: 23
PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:35 am Reply with quote
This was an interesting article and I am looking forward to part 2.

I wonder if ANN would ever have an interview with the Guilt|Pleasure group who have worked with Libré and put out doujinshi of their work.

Very Happy
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TdFern 87



Joined: 03 Jun 2017
Posts: 90
PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:16 am Reply with quote
we really need more mangaka like Felipe here, which is easier said than done. However it would help bring the anime industry closer and learn a thing or two from each other in ways it would be beneficial.
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michizure



Joined: 28 Jun 2006
Posts: 56
PostPosted: Mon Jan 22, 2018 12:06 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
I'm sure one day another American will write and draw his or her own original series for a Japanese audience, [and release] it through a major Japanese publisher – but I don't believe it's happened before or since PEEPO CHOO. So, I will take both the “first-ever” and “only” titles right now, in 2017!

It's an edge case -- OEL manga translated to Japanese -- but didn't Kodansha publish at least one volume of Megatokyo in 2009?
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HeeroTX



Joined: 15 Jul 2002
Posts: 1998
Location: Austin, TX
PostPosted: Mon Jan 22, 2018 12:23 pm Reply with quote
michizure wrote:
Kodansha publish at least one volume of Megatokyo in 2009?

That was my knee-jerk thought when I first read that comment, but Smith is referring to someone actually working for the publisher. There's a couple of points that could debatably equate to "published in Japan" (there's "manga Batman" for example) but he's referring to a specific scenario of an American working WITHIN the manga editorial process, since that's a whole different can of worms. As popular as Megatokyo was at the time, there is NO WAY that Fred Gallagher would be able to maintain a serialized manga (due to the pace) in Japan.
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