It is my long Dojin series, about 1,500pages, which has been closed at the end of 2010. What I'm doing is the preparation of the drawings(digitization) and reviewing.
I review the translation of it - as well as i did my other title from DMP, Moon & Blood. But in this time, the subjects are more expanded than works I've done before, not only translation, but also the fonts & the layout.
There are some documents and emails I exchanged with the translator/editor. We talked about from the translation to the layouts. I think it could be interesting to read for people who loves Japanese manga, especially someone who wants to become an manga-translator or editor. It even could give you some idea how a manga artist compose the work.
Thank you, Kawaii neko who agreed that I post it in this blog and has been patient with me. :)
Part1 -Translation -
Blue= Kawaii Neko(DMG group name)
Manga dialogue is hard to get the accurate meaning because it doesn’t tell everything, to make it short. Shorter is better; space wise and natural conversation wise. And you should make the drawings talk, that is the manga.
Daily conversations are very broken. Especially this one, I sometimes cut off the last half of the sentence and leave it to readers’ imagination. Some get exactly what I mean, but some might not, even you were Japanese. I don’t think all the (Japanese) readers get things what all I planned.
(In fact, I’ve found new things by letters from readers. They read the dialogue/drawings I made very thoughtfully and find something I didn’t intend. But the aspects they found are right, sometimes– fit the character and the situation because they got the characters precisely - so nevertheless I didn’t mean it when I draw, it almost looks like it was planned from the first –which impresses me. This is just an aside…^^;)
In that case (I cut the last half of the sentence), “Joshi助詞” (particles) at the end of the sentence is the key what it means. Joshi is very difficult subject of Japanese, even you were a fluent Japanese speaker you can make mistakes and confuse sometimes. Very subtle, faint nuance it has.
And there is one more element makes it difficult – or the biggest problem – because my composing /drawing skill was very immature (at that time, I say! XD it is my very early work) ; so it happens sometimes that “the drawings didn’t talk”. This has been very valuable for me both in learning more about Japanese language and manga, but also as an editor, seeing different ways to better express ideas :) The ideas in this manga are much more complex than the BL I've done so far, and the little notes for the art book, so this has been a big learning curve for me.
I’ve learnt that I put how many “meanings” in one dialogue, and how many backgrounds they have, during the process (review the translation). You’ve never realised it if you didn’t something like this, and explain what you mean to someone. It is totally new for me. I’m so fussy I know, keep saying “I don’t mean it” so often. It’s not only this time, but many time – it happens. Or every time, I dare say. (I maybe fussier than usual, because you are my friend, it makes me free.) I'm glad you feel comfortable enough with me for this to be so :) I know because you are my friend, I am comfortable to let you know when I am unsure, or don't know..and as you are the creator, I prefer asking you rather than just Google or another person- you know what you mean, and so we can distill the idea!
It can’t be helped you lose something during the translation process, it is impossible you deliver everything in it. You need many explanations and notes or long dialogues for that, it’ll kill the story. Still, I think the translation will be different if you got everything and digested them once. You can cut some parts depends on the situation. Just tell me and explain that, so that I can ask “don’t”, if the part was essential. I will keep this in mind.
If she hadn’t eaten in days…(This is the first day she tried “the food)
Sorry, I should make these part italics “This is the first day she tried ‘the food’”
Reiko says literally “(if) she couldn’t eat many days…” Subtext : She might not be able to eat many days, and she will be weak and die. Not OK at all. It could happen, so don’t you (Tetsu) think we’d better to give her special treatment?
She is suggesting Tetsu to give Yumi special treatment and Tetsu answers to the subtext, “I don’t give her special treatment"
I think maybe adding "so "to the end will put that across better.."It's the first time she's tried the food...so..." with the special treatment as a treat/favor implied..what do you think?
Not for her. He means everything. They eat weed, sleep on the ground, and dying one by one. If he was strong enough, he could do something better, he wouldn’t let them die. He felt he doesn’t have enough power, skill, brain.
Mmm, remove “like you said”…?
She “said” (thinks) Tetsu does everything well, he has enough capability. The fact she thinks he is a good leader, it makes him upset.
He knows his friends think he is a good leader, like a father who knows everything, but he thinks he isn’t. But he can’t show his own feeling, he have to pull himself together for others – with great efforts. It’s exactly same what he said to Yumi before. That the reason that Tatsu is cold to Yumi, he doesn’t like her.
He is always on the edge, can start to lose anytime - more than others, because of the pressure and the sense of isolation.(just like right now) He desires to be strong desperately, so that he would been able to do something, protect them and get better life for them. Yumi touches the most sensitive issue of Tetsu naively. It gets on his nerves.
"I would have been able to do something better…" ?
Changed..think you've nailed that :)
part1 Manga Translation (Japanese → English)
Part2 The "Vertical" Layout of manga
Part3 Manga fonts