Archive for August, 2008

Higurashi = creepy!

I confess I wasn’t all that taken with Higurashi when I first started working on it. For one thing, it’s clear that I’m not part of the demographic that the fanservice is aimed at. 😉 However, deep into the last chapter of the first arc, I’m definitely intrigued now. Okay, maybe it was due in part to the combination of late night, lack of sleep, and Ghost Hunters on TV, but I suddenly got the shivers while lettering last night!

Work snapshot

Because I have a day job, I usually commit to lettering only one book at a time. However, I currently find myself in the predicament of having no less than three books on my plate: His Arrogance, Mr. Flower Bride, and Higurashi 2. Last week this didn’t seem so bad, as I had already cleaned nearly all of His Arrogance (the other two require very little cleaning) and was powering through Higurashi 2 at about 10-15 pages/day (Higurashi‘s on a tighter schedule because of the serialization). Then I realized that the latter is over 240 pages! Most manga I work on are more in the range of 170-190 pages. Eep. Still 80+ pages to go. It’s going to be a busy September….

Requisite photo of my workspace:

I’d like to say it always looks this neat, but that would be a filthy lie. Loki, get down!

Confessions of a manga letterer

I’ll just start this out with a little about me. I have a day job in book production, which I love (but the company I work for has a strict “no blogging about work” policy, so you won’t be hearing any more about them, alas). In my free time (haha), I letter manga. Check out the books I’ve worked on (or am scheduled to work on) under the “List of Work” page, or see the “Recent Books” box on the right.

So, what does a manga letterer do? Essentially, my job is to place the English translation in the Japanese art (so far I have only done Japanese books). I get art files and a script from the publisher, and combine them to make interior files for the English edition. Usually, I also clean and retouch the pages, but sometimes they are already clean when I get them–and once I got to actually work from the original Japanese print files (and all the typeset Japanese was in separate Illustrator files). It was very exciting!

When I’m not working, I enjoy divesting hardcover books of their jackets to check out the case cloth and foil, occasionally studying Japanese (though I’m awfully behind now!), and reading. A lot. I understand it’s practically required that I post photos of my cats every now and then, so just to get us started off on the right foot, here are Bailey (left, named for the Irish Cream) and the new guy, Loki (right):