In the meantime, we have a special(?) installment of our commemorative multi-part series!
Okay, so technically, I already covered the Ace Attorney anthologies, but for this installment, we're covering short story anthologies that aren't all for the same series. The next item on our list of work was the Castle of Dreams anthology, and since I remember next to nothing about that or the Natsuki Takaya anthology we did a couple of years later, we figured we might as well put them together. Seriously, without doing any research, the only thing I can tell you about the Castle of Dreams anthology is that it has the same name as the Cinderella world in Kingdom Hearts, and that we were a little excited that it was by the same author as Kareshi Kanojo no Jijou aka KareKano. And that's not even because we had read and liked KareKano--we were feeling smug that we got to translate something our college friends who no longer talked to us might be interested in by virtue of being by someone whose work they enjoyed.
With research, I can tell you that I don't even know how I managed to find the date we got the assignment, because the email isn't coming up on my search right now. Hold on while I try some other key words.
Okay, so I found the email where we turned it in, and we just read summaries of all the stories, and they do ring a bell, far in the distance.
The thing about anthologies is they're extra hard, because one of the hardest things to translate is exposition. So for one thing, you have to translate the exposition for every single chapter, because each story has its own world and premise that need to be established. And for another thing, there's only one chapter to do it in, so it ends up taking the form of narration (as opposed to dialogue) a little bit more often. Also, because of the quick story turnover, there's not really enough time for each story to make much impression on our memories. But on the bright side, all the foreshadowing is contained in a single chapter, so we don't have to worry about missing a bit of foreshadowing that's going to turn out to be very important thirteen books down the line. (That character is actually a woman? Whew, good thing I learned that before I turned in sixteen translations.)
The Natsuki Takaya translation is ever so slightly more memorable to us, but only because of the Princess Dark Black story. In order to translate that accurately, we had to research the series it came from--Tsubasa o Motsu Mono, however that ended up in English. It might have been in our best interests to read the English release of it, but we figured it was going to be adapted and edited anyway, and people farther down the line could make sure things were more consistent. (Not a hundred percent sure that that was our thought process on the matter--it was four years ago and an anthology.) We just needed to know if there were any story facts that we'd need to know about if they came up. And it was an excuse to buy manga.
I also have a vague recollection of footprints on the ceiling in one of the stories... Our summary of that volume is a lot less in-depth than the one we turned in for Castle of Dreams. TokyoPop always asked us to turn in summaries, and the ones we turned in used to be pretty detailed. Sometime between the two anthologies, we learned how to do cover copy, and that, plus some instruction from TokyoPop editors to make summaries shorter, led to us being much more succinct.
Anyway, because we barely remember anything about any of these stories, of course I can't rank the anthologies on the translation difficulty scale. Maybe a seven? Maybe an eight? Maybe a four, for all I know. Probably not a one.
We remember liking them, and that the Natsuki Takaya anthology had a very distinct mid-nineties manga feel to it. Favorite characters...are lost to memory.
Today I'm thankful for white and dark chocolate Kit-Kats, having checkbooks again, the convenience of the internet, getting to play more Symphonica, and having safely(?) turned in our Manga Battle translation.