Since we had started working at TokyoPop, we had always made it a point to finish translating everything really fast. I'm not sure exactly why this is--whether it was because Jake wanted us to finish Fruits Basket and Ai Yori Aoshi at lightning speed, or whether we liked that we never heard anything about a deadline until it was time for DN Angel 4, but the idea that they might need something really fast and would then come to us must have been a factor. Come to think of it, there were a few times where we witnessed editors go to the Japanese intern (for lack of a better term--we're really not sure he was an intern, but he didn't seem like a full-time employee) and say things like, "We need this whole book done by tomorrow. Can you do it?" And we wanted to have that happen to us.
Scrapped Princess was the series when it finally happened. I'm not sure how long we had to do it, but I know our boss asked for us to get it in as soon as possible. We were more than happy to, because we had seen the anime and liked it, and because it was a good chance to prove ourselves even further.
To clarify, we worked on the Scrapped Princess manga, not the novels. So far we haven't figured out how to prove we can do novels. It was kind of annoying when baranoneko pointed out that... I think it was Seven Seas was hiring translators, and we contacted them, and the guy said, "Actually, I've been trying to get in touch with you for a while, but right now we just need novel translators, and that seems outside of your skillset." Ugh. But right now, we've got enough to do with just manga that it doesn't bother us too much. So we're like, "Fine, you keep your novels, and we'll keep our sanity! Hmph!" But if anyone ever gets the rights to the Saiyuki novels, we might have to start doing some begging or something.
(I feel like I should say something about more recent experience with novels, but...I'd really rather not.)
Aaaanyway. It was kind of weird translating the Scrapped Princess manga, because it was all side-stories. It's just not the same somehow, and it didn't have Chris or Leo. We had a difficult time figuring out how we wanted Shannon to talk. I wonder how the fans think we did. For Pacifica, we just thought of Celeste, because the two are very similar. I think on the translation difficulty scale, we'd give it a four. It was mostly full of sound effects, but we did have a hard time grasping the characters' speech patterns and figuring out some other wording stuff, to make it make sense.
(Incidentally, we still have a difficult time with character voice on characters like Shannon. It seems like it would be so easy, him being the typical knight character, and yet...it's just hard. Maybe we need to find stuff with that type of character and get used to how they talk. We read The Once and Future King, and more importantly The Ill-Made Knight, and you'd think that would have helped. Maybe it didn't because there's not a whole lot of dialogue in comparison to the amount of descriptive prose. Maybe our overall problem is that typical knight characters are mostly typical in video games where that character doesn't talk...)
Scrapped Princess volume 1, we think (but we're not sure we remember correctly), was the first book for which we got paid by the page. Before, we got paid per book, but then when our contract came up for renewal, our boss asked if we wanted to be paid by the page instead. We're unsure of everything, so we're afraid she might have gotten a little annoyed at us because we were like, "I don't know..." and then she would be thinking, "Hello, it's much better for you this way!" And for the most part it is, though sometimes Kadokawa makes us wonder.
My favorite Scrapped Princess characters are Chris and Leo, but they're not in the manga. The manga is mostly just the Casull family, and we like all of them, so they're all our favorites of the manga characters. There was another girl that showed up, and she was nice enough, but from what I remember she seemed pretty average. Maybe one of these days we should go back and read the stuff we've translated.
For people unfamiliar with the Scrapped Princess series, it's about a girl (Pacifica) who was born a princess, but was left to die as a baby because of the typical prophecy of doom--she will lead to the destruction of life as we know it blah blah blah. But a family found her and took her in, and now her adoptive brother and sister, Shannon and Raquel, are her guardians as they travel the countryside to avoid execution. We actually didn't see the whole anime until just a few years ago, and it does go into some very interesting plot twists. We remember being less than satisfied with the ending, but that tends to happen when an anime only has so many episodes to cover so much original material. I'm pretty sure it was based on a series of light novels.
Like I said, the manga was a bunch of side stories, mainly designed as another place for the fans to enjoy the main characters' exploits, so none of it has anything to do with the main story. When that happens, the stories tend to be more superficial, because too much character development could end up being wrong, so it's usually not as fun as the series proper. But then again, I really don't remember much of this series, either, so...
Today I'm thankful for finally having seen all of Scrapped Princess, a new H2O series on Netflix!!!, having chocolate peanut butter Poptarts to try, getting to try those new Newton fruit thins cookies, and having watched all of Columbo that are available on Netflix (and that Columbo is the type of series that can be watched out of order without missing anything).