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Alethea & Athena
Can't let it go 
3rd-Aug-2015 06:14 pm
Okay, so I was fully not intending to hammer on this thing about our friend and his attitude, but there's kind of a funny thing that goes with it now, so I'm going to anyway. I mean, we have come across a couple of things that did take up a lot of mind space for a while (including the series of Try Guy videos trying cosplay, here, here, and here), but it all comes back to the same thing when we're obsessing.

So here's what happened. We were busy working and wishing we didn't have to (mostly because we're hot and tired and it's not a favorite series (but we still like it!) and it's really really text-heavy) when there was a knock at the door. I didn't hear it, but I did see Page bolt out of the room. I thought that was kind of weird and random until Athena said, "Hey, that was a knock at the door." So I answered the door and it was the UPS guy with a package from Kodansha USA. It felt like comp copies, which was unusual but neat. We decided it was unusual enough to merit a break from work so we could open the package.

Sure enough, it was comp copies. And not just any comp copies: it was Noragami! Wahoo! For the first time in our lives we own full English volumes of Noragami!! (Well, three of the same volume.) Not that we were really that upset about not having any before, because we've already read it for goodness sake, and we own the whole series (so far) in Japanese. It's better that way, anyway (says the translators...). Besides, it's not like we have any friends or family who would want to read the series in English.

But that reminded us of one of the things we ranted about when venting about our friend: one of these days, I'd like to see him read Noragami--THEN he'll know that translating isn't as easy as he thinks it is! But then we have to get all ridiculously elaborate about it, because according to our angry theory, if he knows we translated it, it will already be discounted as a not-so-good translation, because obviously he's superior to everyone he knows directly. So the idea is to somehow manipulate him into reading it without knowing that we translated it, which would be quite a feat, considering he doesn't actually read manga; he's only just barely starting to watch anime.

But in a fantasy world where all things are possible, we still imagine. Because! we picked up not one, but three (count 'em, three!...or maybe just two, but definitely more than one!) manga samplers at the Kodansha booth at Anime Expo! So maybe, for example, he'll start watching Attack on Titan, and he'll get to the end and be like, "There has to be more than this!" And we'll say, "Oh, well, maybe you should try reading the manga. We don't have it at all, but here's a sampler with (part of?) the first chapter so you can try it out." And then he'll read it, and maybe he'll be bored or something so he'll read the rest of it and get hooked on Noragami! (We actually don't know if he would like Noragami.)

Then he'll want to read all of volume one, so we'll say, "Well, I guess we'll ask our editor if we can get a copy, since we work for that publisher." And then he'll read it and tell us all about how awesome it was that the translators put so much work into it (assuming he reads the notes, which is also unpredictable), and we'll let him talk it up and sound super smart about it for a while, and then maybe sometime later we'll casually let the truth come out, maybe in a situation like this: He'd want volume two, and we'd offer to get it for him, and he'd be all, "Oh, I don't know; I don't want to get you in trouble for always asking for stuff," and we'd be like, "Well, we translated it, so we really should have copies anyway." And then he'd do a double take and suddenly he wouldn't like it as much.

We're very cynical in our fantasies.

Today I'm thankful for Try Guy cosplay videos, having beautiful comp copies of Noragami 6 (we get to read the continuation of the cliffhanger before anyone else!), the Red Ash anime Kickstarter reaching its funding goal (*crosses fingers for Yuuki Kaji to come to AX next year*), today's chapter of Persona Q being a lot less talkative than the last Side P3 chapter (which we had to translate WHILE WE WERE AT Anime Expo), and getting to watch more My Little Pony last night.
4th-Aug-2015 08:29 pm (UTC)
You got Noragami comps!! That's great! You know it's not that hard to just mention in an email to your editor that you never received comps for the previous 5 volumes... (and I understand your reasons for not really minding not having them, but you SHOULD have them. then on the off chance you learn of someone who might enjoy the series, you'll be ready to share!!)

I don't know if I'd go about introducing someone to the series the way you imagined out though. The "Aha! take that!" moment would be satisfying (if it all happened to go according to plan) but I think that approach just puts the receiver in defensive mode, which isn't conducive to persuasion or agreeability. I also want to believe/hope that he's not really as dismissive of your skill and work as his comment the other day suggests, and that he would be able to approach your translation (knowing it was yours) with a mind ready to enjoy it and not just to critique/criticize it. (of course I don't know him and you do, so you'd know better if this is within the realm of possibility.) (also I realize this is all your cynical☆fantasy (the star makes it cute and fun) and maybe you wouldn't actually do it this way anyway, so apologies for my un-fanciful, don't-i-get-the-joke response!)
4th-Aug-2015 09:35 pm (UTC)
We know it's not hard, but it still takes more effort than we care to put forth. And shelf space. And guess how many volumes of manga we've lent out in the last five years? One, and it was Big Hero 6. There was a time when, when we were feeling especially down about it, we would lament that none of our family reads our manga, and the member of our family who is a CPA would reply (more than once) that she doesn't expect anyone to read her tax returns. So we kept our "it's not the same thing" to ourselves and hoped that one day we would find our people... But so far we've still been pretty much shut-ins, so so much for that.

(That probably sounded really bitter, but we're not that bitter, so please don't think we're rounding on you or anything! We're just telling it like it is, sigh. Also, thanks for being an online friend who understands what we're passionate about!)

It wasn't meant to be so much of a "take that!" as a "tadah...?" There would be no deception--if he ever bothered to ask, we would be honest about it. And I felt the approach, while a bit subterfugey, is friendly: here, let me show you something you might be interested in. We're currently at a point where we really can't tell how dismissive (or nondismissive) he is about anything we do, but coincidentally we just read an article on Facebook about a woman who made up a male alias to see if more agents would read her proposal, and they did.

But anyway, the plan relies on far to many unpredictable elements to be practical in any way, so we most likely won't ever implement it. As for whether or not we try to introduce him to Noragami a different way...I think that depends on whether or not he finds an anime he cares enough about to actually want to read the manga.
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