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One of the things that gets me hyped when it comes to manga is its ability to reach the younger generation and a diverse group of readers across the world (especially women). Compared to a majority of Western comics, there’s something about manga that drives their attention. A while ago, I read an interview with a manga fan who lived in the United Arab Emirates. She talked about living near a Kinokuniya Bookstore in Dubai, which may reflect the growing diversity of the city. It makes me think about the biggest problem manga outside of Japan has – access that makes BOTH consumers and publishers happy.
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"Why yes, I love the smell of freshly printed manga in the morning."
While buying the latest English volumes of Blue Exorcist and Attack on Titan recently, some thoughts resurfaced on why I still prefer print manga. With JManga biting the dust, people are wondering about the future of manga digitally. To tell you the truth, print is still the primary focus for the manga market overall and a preference that I still love for reasons I’m about to get into below.
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To all you folks who want to draw manga, I found an interesting post on a MangaHelpers sub-forum on Weekly Shonen Jump about how new manga should try to appeal to readers. There’s one snippet I would like to highlight and it’s this:
"I guess the main question a mangaka needs to ask themselves in order to write a successful manga is ‘Why?’. Why should we care about your manga? Why should we bother to read it beyond the first chapter? And with such a selective magazine (Weekly Shonen Jump), the mangaka better have that question answered before chapter 1 gets published. I think that’s what separates the exceptional mangaka, like (Yuusei) Matsui and (Eiichiro) Oda, from the mediocre. I guess it’s also what defines the expression ‘doing your homework’."
Which leads to another lesson regarding the importance of asking “why”: never stop learning. There’s always something deeper beneath the surface.
You can read the rest of the post as it is pretty in-depth. Makes you think about when the next worldwide smash hit manga will come.
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Originally, this was supposed to be an article about self-awareness and how it could be the key to help saving the manga industry. And then out of the blue, the big digital manga initiative that was considered to be a “savior of manga”, JManga goes kaput. So what now and does Japan even care?
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