June 3, 2005

Comic-books ... or book-books?

Are novels the new manga? Love Manga catches wind of Tokyopop's .hack novel spinoff, Pseudome is buzzing about Tokyopop taking original prose fiction submissions (and hey, we don't even have to come up with a fancy term for it, it's just NOVELS -- well, illustrated serial novels), and Viz announces their own line of novels, based on popular properties like Fullmetal Alchemist but also branching out to original Japanese novels like Socrates in Love and Kamikaze Girls. It wouldn't be the first time for Viz, who published the English edition of the Battle Royale novel a couple of years ago. But what happened, guys -- did you all run out of comics already?

Not according to AoD, where a long list of fresh Viz solicits have been announced. It's also noted that, based on this time scale, the 28th and final volume of Rurouni Kenshin will arrive by 2006. Very few long-running (and completed) manga series have made it to the finish line in the U.S. yet, so this will be quite an event.

Also loosely connected to novels, YACB discusses the implications Harlequin's jump into manga. There's also information about a couple of the stories that will be adapted into comic form. But here's the key line: "There are many ways that this enterprise could fail." The comics industry is notorious for shooting itself in the foot with marketing mess-ups and missed opportunities, so this new angle on romance novels could hit big or fall flat depending on how it's presented to the public.

And another one from LM: Queenie Chan* contributes an article to Manga Life, reviewing the Comicworks art software.

*I know this confuses tons of people who encounter her or her artwork for the first time, so, yes, Chan is her surname. It's not the Japanese honorific that we're more familiar with, and Queenie is not an online alias. It's her actual name.

Animania drops a couple of links where you can read manga online in Japanese, with one for the classics and another with previews of the latest stuff.


Dave Carter said...

Hey Pata. The link for my Harlequin post moved to http://yetanothercomicsblog.blogspot.com/2005/06/harlequin-romance-comics.html when I fixed the typo in the article title and Blogger helpfully moved the URL...

6:06 AM  
Robert Boyd said...

Early on, Tpop published Sailor Moon "middle reader" novels, mostly penned by fan fic writers. I met one of the writers--a talented teenaged girl--and thought that this was a great idea. They sold pretty well, too, and provided entree into the booktrade that was still (at that time) a little hesitant to take in lots of graphic novels. (Obviously this has changed.) I was sort of surprised that Tpop stopped this proactive, but it may have been that the novel licenses were too expensive. I'm glad to see them returning to prose novels. It seems like an obvious growth area, although not without its potential pitfalls.

12:53 PM  

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