azurite: (sailormoon - crescent wand look)
Second to last day, folks. Hard to believe it's already been a month! These posts have been bought to you by the letters S and F...for Sailor Failures.

♥ » Day 29 – Solar System Soldiers or Sailor Starlights? )
azurite: (all muses are busy...)
So I never actually said what swag I got at Anime Expo! For me, at least, swag a big part of the con-going experience. Panels can be fun (or totally lousy, depending on scheduling, "technical difficulties" and other stupid things), and screenings can be a blast (or put you to sleep because there's no variety and the lines stink), but I mainly go to cons these days for the following things:
* Friends
* AMVs
* Swag
* Cosplay
in that order. All told, I "got" all of those things at Anime Expo, so you could say I had a good time.

Swagalicious! )

So I'm overall satisfied with what I got, even though the Expo itself wasn't as good this year as last year. That's really a much longer story, but suffice it to say, they were just very disorganized. That makes people irritable and rude, and that makes other people miserable.

To get...eventually )

So if you happen to be selling any of these or know where I can get them cheap, drop me a line!
azurite: (all muses are busy...)
These tend to be fun, even if I should actually be, yanno, writing fic.

Stolen shamelessly from [ profile] rose_of_pollux.

To fic or not to fic: that is the question! )
azurite: (sailormoon - crescent wand look)
Another meme. I'm bored.

Comment on this post saying you want to do this. I will choose seven interests from your profile and you will explain what they mean and why you are interested in them. Post this along with your answers in your own journal so that others can play along.

Ganked from [ profile] rose_of_pollux, so she selected the seven interests; feel free to ask about other ones, but then expect me to ask about yours!

Interesting! )
azurite: (fy - miaka & tamahome (red))
I just finished re-watching Fushigi Yuugi: Eikoden, also known as "Legend of the Eternal Light." I'm sure it would have made a lot more sense in the novel form (assuming I understood the idea that it was based off the Fushigi Yuugi Gaiden novels), but the episodes were long enough to convey a plot and...I'm still a bit confused.

Kaishen! )

"Eikoden" seems to wrap everything up, but it's only left me with more questions.
azurite: (fy - miaka)
Despite all the impending insanity of finals and graduation, I still find time for fandom. Or rather, fandom finds its way to my head whether I like it or not, and the best way to clear my head and actually study is to get these thoughts "out," even if it's merely in blog form.

Fushigi Yuugi: Genbu Kaiden is just about over, with the 10th and final volume coming out in English in Spring 2010. The way things are looking...well, for the uninformed, I shall not spoil you. Check the cut. Shentsu-PAO! )


Jul. 13th, 2009 01:59 pm
azurite: (disney - ariel ooh shiny!)
So, I finally got to the last save point in Kingdom Hearts. Needless to say I've got some questions and ideas. I may have spoiled myself silly about Kingdom Hearts II and the other games, like Chain of Memories and Birth by Sleep and 358/2 Days, but that doesn't mean I'll do it to others.

I can haz keyblade? )
azurite: (fandom destroyed my social skills)
My dad thinks I'm too much of a critic. I think that having the standards I do ("being so critical") will serve me well in my chosen career as an editor. It's not like I've set a goal to be a hard-ass with impossible standards, but I do think that if I follow Dad's advice of "Reach for the stars, land on the moon; reach for the sidewalk, land in the gutter" is quite applicable. What I take it to mean is that if we set the bar too low, the results we get back will be lower than expectations, instead of meeting or surpassing expectations. But if we set a high standard, we might not get "excellence bar none," but we'll still get some pretty good stuff that, with a little bit of work, might just be "excellent!"

I don't think there's any excuse for not editing your work when you have the chance. For example, if you make an icon and someone tells you a word is spelled wrong, short of you having NOT saved the *.psd or whatever, what's stopping you from remaking it? Obviously, if you get the email when you're not at the computer with your graphics editor, etc. it's fine if you don't remake it immediately, but why not do it when you have the chance?

Same goes for fics. When someone says "comments and constructive criticism are appreciated!" or whatever and someone DOES offer those, shouldn't the author take them to heart and apply their newfound knowledge? It's not a matter of "Ouch, someone had to correct me on my bad spelling/grammar/canon facts," it's a matter of "I can make this better!" Even if you only apply it to future chapters for the time being, at some point, it's fairly easy to do with already-posted chapters. It takes about the same amount of time to fix fic errors as it does for icons-- maybe ten minutes, assuming the problems aren't too numerous or too major.

With fics, especially, "financial feasibility" is not an excuse. That's about the only one I'd accept from a manga publisher (like Viz); it's not always feasible to revise a manga just because of a few spelling errors. But posting fics is free, and I can't stand anyone that bothers to post their fics when they're too lazy to go back and FIX the things for future readers (or re-readers).

Anyway, manga's the whole reason I brought this up; I got myself the new "VIZBIG" edition of Fushigi Yuugi today, which compiles Vols. 1-3. I'm guessing it's the English equivalent to the bunkoban Fushigi Yuugi that were released in Japan a few years ago. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like much has been revised, either in the way of writing, translating, or art. Sure, two of those three fall on Watase's shoulders, but I'm looking more at Viz here; it's entirely possible they didn't use the bunkoban re-releases for the VIZBIG editions and instead opted to re-use their original translations, re-flip the images to their proper direction (Viz first published FY when manga WAS NOT in the original "right-to-left" format), etc.

What's especially got my goat is easy-to-spot problems that you don't see in their current titles:

* 'Whoa' being spelled was 'Woah' repeatedly (common mistake and probably a small one for me to get worked up over, but STILL!)

* References to American pop culture, rather than the original Japanese ones. This is my biggest pet peeve, even if there was only one distinguishable one ("Look! Jennifer Aniston and Lisa Kudrow in bikinis!") throughout the whole VIZBIG volume. They had this problem in the original translation release of "Ceres: Celestial Legend" too, but they fixed them for the second edition releases, and explained what the references were, e.g. who SMAP was and such. I realize lots of American shows get dubbed in Japan, but honestly? Miaka doesn't strike me as the type who watches "FRIENDS" or knows who Jennifer Aniston and Lisa Kudrow are, anyway. *shrug* It could just be me, but... why not leave it? I bought the title to read a TRANSLATION, not a REVISION of the original author's words.

* Their romanization system. MAKE UP YOUR DAMN MIND AND PICK ONE, VIZ. There are lots of romanization systems out there. The one I was taught to use (I believe it's the most common academically, and is also widely used in manga translation) is the Hepburn system, where Miaka's surname would be spelled out "Yuuki" or written "Yûki," but they don't bother to do that. They use the circumflex for the title, but, as per Watase-sensei's request, they use "Yuu" as her name, instead of "Yû." Why can't they just pick one system and stick with it? I, for one, prefer to see "Miaka Yuuki" and "Fushigi Yuugi" instead of "Miaka Yuki" (no circumflex, even!) or "Miaka Yûki" etc.

* The SFX glossary in the back. Yes, it's nice and helpful, but honestly? Who's going to flip to the back of the book every time they're curious about what the kana on their given panel mean? Especially in a VIZBIG volume which is several HUNDRED pages long!? Why not just put the translation of the kana (romanization and meaning) in a smaller type just above the kana in question, or off to the side if it's a page-wide sound effect or on a screen toned background?

* General mistakes: a panel where Hotohori calls Miaka "princess" instead of "priestess," a place where "Imperial" was misspelled as "Emperial" (NOT A WORD, PEOPLE. Even in Star Wars, ships belonging to the Empire were Imperial Star Destroyers and whatnot. This was a big issue in Sailor Moon too, when they kept on calling the Ginzuishou different things, like the Emperium Silver Crystal and I was like "But the Moon Kingdom wasn't an Empire! They didn't have an Emperor/Empress! WTF!?")

FY was originally released in the Japanese in 1992. Viz first picked it up a while after that, and they finished their second edition run of it YEARS ago. So why when they release their first compilation (and supposed "revision," but maybe that's just my interpretation of a "collector's edition" or whatever... the BEST stuff made BETTER) is it chock full of such BASIC errors?

Yes, it's cool that they're using the Chinese names for the people and places (I don't know if they did that for the first edition releases; my only first edition volume is back in S.F., and for all I know I'm getting it mixed up with the anime from when I first saw it), but for a manga that's over a decade old and is still considered one of the definitive shoujo manga, it's not good enough. They need to do more than include more color images and an SFX glossary. They need to do more than use the Chinese names and have a table showing their Japanese and English equivalents.

*sigh* What sucks is, once upon a time, I would have said to myself, "I can do better!" and I would dream of being an editor at Viz. Now, that no longer really interests me, even though I DO think I could probably do it. But for all I know, I'd suck at it because I'd want to spend more time and money on titles than the company wants to. But for me as a consumer, if I'm going to be paying more than $9.95 for a graphic novel title (which is already expensive enough as it is, considering the tankoubon in Japan are usually ¥300-700), I want it to be top-notch quality. I pay that much for what Del Ray puts out because it's DAMN GOOD QUALITY. The cover, the translation, the editing, EVERYTHING. I was actually pleased that Miwa Ueda's latest title "Papillion," got picked up by Del Rey instead of Tokyopop, who did an AWFUL job on "Peach Girl."

So, barring the dream job of making manga better myself, there's not giving companies that I think suck my money. But the fact is, it's impossible to find titles like these in complete sets anymore. I didn't have the money to buy FY when it was originally coming out, so I don't own any of it, except for that one crappy first edition translation and one Japanese edition (Vol. 14 of the original release, not even the bunkoban!). I should be glad that they're even re-releasing it! And to be honest, 3 volumes in 1 is a pretty good deal for $17.99, plus a selection of full-color images in the back.

Viz did a somewhat sucky job with "Yu-Gi-Oh!" too, but I still bought all 36 volumes because I wanted to read the story in English, not struggle with my Japanese. I only buy Japanese titles when the English equivalent (if there IS one at all) sucks SO HORRIBLY it makes me cringe. Think anything from Tokyopop (er, Mixx)'s old days. I hated their Peach Girl. I hated their Sailor Moon. I want Del Rey to pick them up (their Japanese versions were originally published by Kodansha, Del Ray's parent company, anyway) and revise them!

The only thing I can think of to do where I still get my manga and I feel like my voice will be heard is... write. So I'm writing. Maybe if enough people write and complain, their editorial staff will start to get some higher standards. I really don't think changing "Woah" to "Whoa" takes all that long, no matter what typesetting program you use. Okay, so a revision of the first VIZBIG FY might not ever come out, but if the second volume is better? I'll be happy and MUCH more willing to part with my $17.99 plus tax.

SIDE NOTE: Anyone here use Google Reader? I was using Sage, then Sage Too, then Simple RSS, then Wizz RSS-- all extensions for Firefox. I don't know whether it's something about Firefox 3.0.5 or those extensions or what, but THEY ALL SUCK. Some don't accept cookies (which means I can't read friends-locked entries), and some kept on changing my RSS feed URL and I'd have to go back to the [ profile] howto entry to copy-paste it in again. I've been using it lately and it looks okay, but I'm not sure if it accepts cookies, and that's kind of a MUST for me. So far, Wizz RSS was the only one that did, but I'm frankly sick of it changing my RSS URL all the time. It's probably related to the weird bookmarks issue Firefox is having, which I have determined has nothing to do with the extension. So... grr. Any tips for BEST FREE RSS READERS, web-based or otherwise, would be greatly appreciated.

 Kaze no Uta by Chika Sakamoto from Fushigi Yuugi - Character's Vocal Memories (Rating: 0)
azurite: (all muses are busy...)
Unofficially tagged by [ profile] a_white_rain. Sounds like an interesting meme.

Sometimes it's okay to pimp yourself out. Post a list of your top five favorite fics that you've written, regardless of fandom or the reason you love them. This isn't about the BEST things you've written, but what you LOVE most. Then tag five other people to do the same.

Like AWR, I won't tag anyone in specific, but any fic writers on this list, I TAG YOU! Just do eet. (I'd love to see the fic writers on this FL do this. It might be fun to [re-]read fics that I wouldn't expect are the author's favorites.)

Oh, and these are not in top five order, or descending order or anything like that.

Will you LOL? )
azurite: (ygo: size matters (boobs!))
I'm weird with my manga. I detest the original Mixxzine/Tokyopop release of Sailor Moon, so unless Del Rey translates Kodansha's new re-released version, I will never again buy it in English. The fact that I still own (technically, somewhere back at my mom's house, because I doubt she's gotten around to selling it yet) any of the comics besides the anthology magazines is saying a LOT.

I hated their translation of Peach Girl, too, but I got sick of trying to translate the Sae's Story (aka "Reverse Side," which is its proper title, and sounds a lot better than "Sae's Story" anyway... though the concept of "Reverse Side" is likely lost on a lot of English-speaking audiences). So I bought all 3 volumes of it (and, parentheses-loving me adds, it doesn't seem enough! Who'd've thought Sae could be seen in a sympathetic light?), and while I *STILL* hate the typesetting and the half-ass translation job (literally, only the speech bubbles seem translated, and not appropriately, either!), it's better than never really knowing the full story because I got bored of being the only one trying to translate the volumes as they came out AT A SNAIL'S PACE.

That's true for a lot of other manga, though. Either I got impatient with the English release (and now it's done), or I initially hated the English release (but now I'm "eh" with it and just don't want to slave over Japanese anymore). So I'm contemplating selling my random volumes of manga (Hinata 120%!, Gentleman's Alliance+ Vol. 1 in Japanese, Fushigi Yuugi Vol. 14 in Japanese, Alice 19th Vol. 1 in Japanese, Hana Yori Dango Vols. 35-36 in Japanese, and possibly all 7 volumes of the original Full Moon o Sagashite in Japanese.) I'm also STILL trying to sell some volumes of Skip Beat in Japanese, since I like the Viz translation of that decently enough.

If ANYONE is interested in ANY of those volumes/ANY of those titles, please let me know.

I'd like to put them up on eBay, but alas, my last attempts at selling them there flopped like a wet noodle. Any suggestions? Maybe eBay Japan... or Amazon Japan or something? -_- Of course, I'd have to sell them for below list price, which defeats the purpose of me EARNING money to buy the English adaptations... another reason why the market as a whole SUCKS, because English translation of manga is SO much more expensive than the original, and when was the last time you saw an ENGLISH adapted manga with a DUST COVER!?!??!!?

Which manga might I be better off keeping the Japanese for? I've at least already got a huge portion of the English adaptations of...
* Fushigi Yuugi (at least Genbu Kaiden)
* Hana Yori Dango (aka Boys Over Flowers)
* Skip Beat

And while I disliked the original releases of Peach Girl, they have since re-released them (though they stupidly renumbered them what with that whole "Change of Heart" sequence) in the right-to-left format. I'm fairly sure the sucky typesetting hasn't changed, though. I might just keep the originals for Peach Girl, even though the last few storylines were too complex for me to translate.

Has anyone who has bought the English versions of Full Moon really liked/hated it? Ignoring the story and art, what do you think of the translation? The appearance? The print quality?

Also, is buying either Fushigi Yuugi and/or Gentleman's Alliance+ worth it? FY is already completed in the most-recently revised version, but I have no idea how long GA+ is or will be, and I've heard it's got some shonen-ai elements, which, to be honest, aren't quite my bag. Plus there are *NEW* SB titles that I want to get, so I'd rather focus on those after I sell the ones I don't want, e.g. the Japanese stuff.

also, can't sleep. Dunno why.
azurite: (usagi sweater)
So the other day, I mentioned how I was reading Ceres: Celestial Legend, aka Ayashi no Ceres, along with the tail-end of Death Note (oops, turns out I have up to Vol. 11; the last volume, 12, doesn't come out until July), and contemplating love, romance, and relationships in manga.

Guys, girls, and all that stuff )
azurite: (poor bi grrl gamers)
I know I said I wouldn't post updates about Blue Reflections in here, but all I'm saying is that I have fixed the error with the comment form, have added tons more people to my friends' blogs section, and have added a bunch of entries in the past week or so. I'll be adding more too, as is per usual with my end of the week hiatus, plus I have some songs itching to get posted.

AMC: I've been working steadfastly on getting Seven South up with its new layout; I still have to get all the sub-pages up and running, along with the synopses for the episodes. I just rented the 3rd OVA, so I'll be able to write about the complete series up till November, when Eikoden comes out! Yay!
I have tons of other pages to add, and I'm drawing a blank for a layout for "Learning Software," my Chobits page. I really don't want to use someone else's layout, and at this point, looking for templates and ideas is becoming frustrating. LS may be a while in the making due to this. I'm also skipping around watching the episodes... I watched through 17 yesterday, but still haven't seen 12-14. I'll post episode summaries and MP3s as I get ahold of them.

In case you didn't know before, I have added the once-separate Maboroshi Tsuki to the AMC Network. Since I put it off for so long, it's one of my priorities to get up and running, mostly with fanfiction and synopses.

MS: It's in desperate need of a new, fall-layout, so look for that soon. I have tons of potential ideas, and since it's Sailormoon, I'm in no need of images! I'm still looking to simplify a lot of the sections so navigating to find what you want isn't such a pain, but I want to keep the comprehensiveness I have had for the past several years. I most definitely want to get up MSRARR up and running, not to mention the Webstuff collection. Viva Forever is now integrated within MS, so finding Site Features should be a snap... once I get them uploaded. It'll take time, between school (haha) and my "social events" every Thursday and Friday, but I know I can do it! ^^ Also, feel free to send in your favorite links, submissions for art or fiction, reviews, rants... whatever!

BLA: Blacklight Arcade is the newest addition to the domain (which needs a name, by the way, even if it is just a turnpike to all my other pages... any ideas?) I plan on putting my "______ for beginners" game guides there, along with links to walkthroughs, cheats, and other great resources that took me forever to find and helped me out a lot. Of course, I'll also be posting fanfiction, and quite possibly fanart there, once I start posting it! My DDR fic ("Goodbye, Hello, Who Are You?"), already posted on, will be posted there.

Okay, that's it for now... hopefully be back soon with the Photojournal, Guides, and more REAL updates...

2009 ETA: It's worth mentioning that the majority of the sites mentioned/linked above are now defunct, but will be reappearing somewhere on my current domain, someday in the hopefully not-too-distant future.

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