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SMAC! MANGA DOJO #6 – "Never TRY TO FIND for ideas!"

Mayuna Mizutani Mayuna Mizutani 09/04/2018 9 min read
<Characters> Penmaru Is a ninja dog who dreams of becoming the greatest manga creator in the animal world. To help achieve his dream, Mocchi gives him a mission… “Learn how to create manga at the Manga Dojo.” His favorite “idea spot” is the bath.   “Shihan” Manga Master The master of the dojo and Penmaru’s tutor in the ways of manga. An experienced editor who had worked in the manga industry for over 30 years. His favorite “idea spot” is the dojo’s toilet.   <Previously in Manga Dojo> Penmaru could not finish cleaning the Dojo, which he started with the best intentions, early that morning. In view of how unorganized Penmaru is, Shihan taught him the “5 Steps of Creating Manga”, explaining how important it is to “plan” the creation. The lesson aroused Penmaru to finish his task with enthusiasm! Can he really finish the task in hand and begin working on his manga creation!?    

Ep.6 ”Never TRY TO FIND for ideas!”

  Shihan: Penmaru, how are things…NOT DONE YET???!!! Why are you lazing around in front of the computer!?   Penmaru: Oh, Shihan! Please take a look! It’s the newest, most cutting-edge cleaning machine! A robot Maid! The clean-up would be finished in a flash is we have this! It does cost around 10,000,000 Yen… but let’s buy it!!   Shihan: Wait, wait wait! We already have brooms and dustpans, floorcloths and even a good vacuum cleaner! Why do we need this contraption!?   Penmaru: Eeee, but those things are old…I think it’s better to have the newest tools – not just for cleaning, but also in creating Manga!   Shihan: ……Hm, I see you are getting the wrong idea…   Penmaru: W, wrong, you say?   Shihan: Yes. With that in mind, I will teach you the “Secret of ‘Neta-Dashi’ ” today…That should teach you how to “clean up ” your ideas and how you don’t necessarily need something NEW to do it!   Penmaru: Aha! “Neta-Dashi” is the very first step of the “5 Steps to Creating Manga”, right?   Shihan: Correct! Well done. To be thorough, it is the process of finding the “Seeds of Ideas (=Neta)” that could make your manga entertaining to read. Penmaru, how do you usually find these “seeds of ideas”?   Penmaru: ??? Is there anything else besides “think until you get it”, or “go find something new”, or “wait until it comes to you”?   Shihan: I see… From my experience, I can say that it is very difficult to find a novel AND entertaining idea, in such a haphazard way.   Penmaru: Really!? Is that true!?   Shihan: Yes. Because ideas are not something you “think”, “make up”, or “wait until it comes”. To find a good idea, it’s best to search from a certain place you know very well.   Penmaru: A place I know… Where is that? Is it in my house? At school? Don’t tell me it’s in the toilet!   Shihan: It’s inside your brain… You must search INSIDE YOURSELF!   Penmaru: M, my brain? What do you mean?   Shihan: Shotaro Ishinomori sensei, the manga creator of numerous masterpieces such as ‘Kamen Rider (Masked Rider)’ and ‘Cyborg 009’, says…
“Fresh and interesting ideas are most likely born by tying two areas of ‘Knowledge’ that seemingly do not connect together.” ——Quote:”Ishinomori Shotaro No Mangaka Nyumon” (Akita Bunko, 1988)
That is, you’re more likely to find fresh and interesting ideas that grab people’s hearts by finding something fun you have seen, heard, or experienced. It’s much better than making up a whole new concept from zero! You cannot make, or even draw something you don’t know. But if you’re drawing something novel from something you DO know, that its what attracts people’s curiosity. We can say that “Neta-Dashi” is the process where you cook from your own knowledge, and discover something that “clicks” to the readers.   Penmaru: I, I see…   Shihan: Now Penmaru, I hope you can see. Before you go off buying some peculiar machine that you don’t know how to use, you must finish cleaning with the tools you know well. The tools right in your own hands!   Penmaru: Uu… but…   Shihan: But?   Penmaru: BUT STILL I WANT THAT MAID-SAN ROBOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!!!!!! (Zooooooooooooom)   Shihan: Huh!? Hey! Wait Penmaru!! Where are you going!?!?     Shihan’s lessons gave Penmaru an inspiring new perspective! But with his heart, latched onto the maid robot, however, the regretful Penmaru finally runs away from the Dojo! Where will he go!? Will this clean-up ever end!? Wait until next week to see what happens!   < NEXT EPISODE… April 16 MON >   Did you enjoy reading this story? Did you find the hints and tips to improve your manga production? If YES, please share the article with your fellow creators! If NO, please let me know how we can improve Penmaru’s journey! We welcome any and all kinds of opinions and questions, requests and comments, day and night! Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter for updates 😉
Script: Mayuna Mizutani – Follow me on Twitter and Facebook Illustration: Roberto F. – Support him on Instagram, Facebook & Tweet your questions / opinions / reviews at #SMACMangaDojo, and I will answer! 😉
Mayuna Mizutani

Mayuna Mizutani