Writing Log 11/19/2018

– I finished editing all the stories in my Ghost Stories zine! I reformatted the file in InDesign and sent the PDF to the printer, a service called Mixam that came highly recommended by an artist friend on Tumblr. If all goes well, I should have the books in my hands this Friday.

– I also finished editing the zine for my “Anime and Manga Studies” course this semester. One of the class assignments was for everyone to submit a zine page based on their research projects. Some of the students phoned it in (which kind of hurt my feelings, to be honest), but most of them created fantastic work. It took me a solid eleven hours to put the zine together, but it was worth the effort. I just submitted the file to Mixam this morning, and I should be able to give my students copies of the zine during the final week of class, when they’re scheduled to present their projects.

– I had a wonderful time participating in the “Remembering Isao Takahata, Co-Founder of Studio Ghibli” panel at Anime NYC this past weekend. The panel was sponsored by the Japan Foundation, who put a considerable amount of care into promoting it. As a result, the room was at its full capacity of 215 people. It was a great audience! My co-panelist, CJ Suzuki, is one of my favorite people, and it’s always a pleasure to work with him.

– As I was talking to people over the weekend, I played down the time and effort I put into researching and writing (and memorizing) this presentation, but I’ve actually been working on it since August. I’m considering editing all of my material into a blog post, but that may only happen next year.

– I also introduced a screening of the Takahata film My Neighbors the Yamadas at the Japan Society on Saturday evening. I can’t even begin to describe how incredible this was. I met and talked with so many smart and interesting people, and the experience renewed my sense of what exactly it is that I’m trying to accomplish by studying popular media. It’s not an exaggeration to say that the experience filled me with hope and determination!