More good news on the licensed h-manga front: among many other titles, Ring x Mama is going to receive an official English version courtesy of Project-H. I’m very happy to hear that English-speaking Manabe Joji fans will have a chance to support him. To be honest, I can’t even read the early chapters of our scanlated version – there were far too many newbie mistakes. It’ll be good to see it redone in the hands of someone more experienced.
That said, it doesn’t look like we’ll be the ones performing the work on it. Having already committed ourselves to 6 volumes of Harumi Chihiro’s two series, adding another 5-volume series on top of that seems like it might be unwise. I’d rather we know that we have our workload under control than accidentally over-commit ourselves into paralysis, which is a classic scanlation mistake. I’ll try and see if I can act in any sort of an advisory role with whoever is doing the localization, but it’s up to Project-H’s discretion. In any case, we’ll be providing more information as the volumes become available in print.
Other licenses in this round of announcements were Velvet Kiss Volume 4, completing the series, and the Mizuki Asamori series “Goddess of the Glass.” That’s another series from my distant scanlating past that I’m glad will be given the attention it needs by someone who has a better idea of what they’re doing. As for Velvet Kiss, we’re not confirmed to be working on the last volume quite yet, but it’s probably a safe bet.
I know that there are probably plenty of people out there who are a little disappointed that when we switched to working on licensed material, it’s been stuff that they’ve already read before in scanlation. We understand and share the concern, believe me. Our primary reason for getting involved with licensed releases was so we could ensure that they weren’t bungled. We have these two Harumi Chihiro series, Velvet Kiss and Love on the Job, that we want to make sure are as good as possible in English. Beyond that, it’ll be new stuff.
One series that we still see people express interest in is Manabe Joji’s Kanojo de Ippai. It’s an absolutely hilarious series that I, more than probably anyone else, want to see in English. But it’s gotta be done correctly. Unlike a few years ago, there really is a possibility of an official English license now, and if you respect Manabe Joji like I do, then you’ll want to support him through the channel of his choosing. I’ve been trying to twist Project-H’s arm for months, but I’m only one schmuck. What you might not realize is that your voice matters a whole lot more than you might realize. Project-H licenses a lot of stuff based on fan feedback since they know that artists who are popular in scanlation are likely to have more fans that are excited to support an official version once it becomes available. The most effective form of lobbying them is to talk to them on twitter. It helps them build the brand up as an internet-savvy new licensor, and it probably helps them make the case to Japanese publishers that there’s a real interest in this material. You don’t have to use your real twitter account if you don’t want Aunt May to see what you’re up to. I’ll be here to pounce on any new Manabe Joji or Harumi Chihiro work that gets licensed and give it my best, but in the meantime, that’s the best way I know of to get the ball rolling. It doesn’t even have to be authors that we’ve worked on in the past, any artist you’re a fan of would be a good suggestion to Project-H if you want to be able to support them officially.
In order to keep the front page fresh, I’m gonna try and write up some more posts on the general manga and h-manga industry in the not-too-distant future. I’ll see if we can’t make a little use of Project-H’s contacts within the industry to try and explain some of the stuff that’s really opaque to people outside of Japan. See you then!
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