Chat with Joachim Kaps

February 21, 2007

On January 16th, Dr. Joachim Kaps, head of Tokyopop.de answered questions in a chat hosted by AnimeY. Here are the points of interest with regard to the German manga scene:

There are no deadlines to apply to MangaFieber, applications are accepted 365 days a year.
One of the artists from MF1 will soon have their own project out, which should surprise everyone. Other artists are also still in contact with TP, but have not yet found the right project for them.
Christina Plaka’s next volume of Yonen Buzz will be out in July, and so far, no end for the series is planned.
Jo Kaps’ favorite manga from EMA and Carlsen are Judith Park, whom he worked with in his Carlsen time, Dragonball, Conan and DuO, whose artwork he really likes.
As announced earlier, there will be a small limited edition of Gothic Sports merchandise to test fans’ reactions.
As for payment, he says that neither artists nor editors currently get rich working for TP. However, if one lives frugally, then being an artist full-time can work, as it does for Anike Hage. However, licensing works to other countries and merchandise should hopefully add a little to the salary.
Unlike numbers cited by Georg F. W. Tempel (head of EMA), he says only few manga manage to sell more than 10,000 copies. However, he says that Anike Hage is close to getting there. Many countries seem to have expressed interest in In the End and Grimms Manga.
So far, no specific projects are planned with Olga Rogalski and Natalie Wormsbecher, but both are considered great talents, and it is a matter of finding the right project.

New Animexx Anthologies

February 19, 2007

Animexx has plans for two new anthologies, one erotic one (Animexx Henati-Mixx), to come out in May/June 2007, and one BL one, which is planned for late 2007/early 2008.

In other news, check out Viviane’s page which we just added to our creator’s list. Her manga Gott Gauss will be published by EMA this summer.

Hungry Hearts 1
ISBN 3-934167-35-7, available at amazon.de
German language
176 pages – 6.50 Euros
Release date: March 22, 2007

Schwarzer Turm has already brought out two remarkable anthologies from the “Turm Manga Spezial” line, “Es war keinmal” and “200g Hack”. The third anthology, “Hungry Hearts“, seduces readers with seven erotic comics.
With a rating of 16 and up, the reader can expect the naked truth and suggestive stories.
Yuri and Boys Love-lovers haven’t been forgotten. Niki Smith‘s short story, “Fingerspitzen”, puts you in the middle of a lesbian romantic scene. Those who like it a little more explicit will enjoy Hermann Geisler‘s story “Flesh ‘N’ Steel”, a mix of sci-fi and naked women.
“Hungry Hearts” is published left-to-right, and the varied styles of the artists should also charm lovers of classic European comics.

Judith Park chat

February 15, 2007

Judith Park was recently in a chat hosted by AnimeY, the transcript of which can be found here. Over 80 people joined in.

Regarding Chibi/Daisuki:
At the time of the chat, Park was hard at work on Luxus, her Chibi manga. Luxus takes place in Duesseldorf, and according to Park, “I’m addressing a big problem of society, and Duesseldorf for me is the personification of that problem.” She enjoyed the page count, calling it perfect for short stories, but is too busy with Y Square PLUS to do any more any time soon. Y Square PLUS’s run in Daisuki, a monthly manga anthology, will soon be joined by a new series by German mangaka Stella Brandner, which starts in May.
The second round of Chibis are already in production, with two “boxes” (in connection to their display) released a year. For anyone interested in pitching to Chibi, Park says to send a normal pitch to Anne anytime. What’s important for a pitch?

Concept is most important- it should be reduced to the essentials – 1 page is optimal. Really important is character info, location, time and topic. Apart from that, first scribbles and page layouts, as well as character illustrations.

Regarding her history as a comic artist:
Park says she never really applied- Joachim Kaps apparently contacted her and they met up at the Leipzig Bookfair and discussed possible story ideas. She didn’t have to pitch more than once, as her first submission, Dystopia, was accepted. One of her favorite things about working for Carlsen is working with her editor, who she’s been a time with for a while. Park says that being published really opened her eyes to the differences between an amateur and a professional, and made her realize how much she needed to improve– hence her style developing and improving so much between Dystopia and Y Square.
It takes her about 6-7 months to create a manga, with one month per chapter. Because of the editing, etc, it ends up being about a year.
Regarding future works:
She’s working on a collaboration with Anike Hage, but is really busy right now, so it’s taking some time. Park would like to some day try a longer series (she’s currently working on her third single volume work), but recognizes how well thought-out it would need to be. She’d like to try “more dramatic stories, or something action or bizarre,” but again says she will only try these once she feels she’s evolved enough.

TP Leipzig Signings

February 10, 2007

Leipzig Bookfair is coming up next month, and Tokyopop has released the list of who’ll be there giving autographs. They will all take place in the signing area of Comic-Zentrum.

Saturday, 03/24
12-1pm : Pink Psycho (In the End)
1-2pm: Anike Hage (Gothic Sports v1, v2)
Natalie Wormsbecher (Summer Rain)

Sunday, 03/25
10-11am: Anike Hage and Natalie Wormsbecher
12-1pm: Pink Psycho
3-4pm: Anike Hage, Natalie Wormsbecher & Pink Psycho

February 8, 2007

Gothic Sports has proven it’s worth as it slips past into the almost always all-Japanese top 15 manga chart, posted by SplashComics! Volume 2 has squeezed into 13th place for the month of January.

ComicCampus has announced the winners of the lastest competition! The third place winner also appears in Hungry Hearts v1, from Schwarzer Turm. The youngest competition winner was 15, with the oldest at 53. Never give up!
1 place: “Wish’s [sic] May Come True” by Kim Liersch and Roda Makmod
2 place: “Take It Easy, Boss!” by Sandra Jockus
3 place: “Die Blutrolle” by Hermann Geisler
runners up are:
“Nothing’s Forever” by Janina Putzer
“Die Grosse Welle” by Hannelore Greinecker-Morocutti

Deutsche Mangaka Films

February 5, 2007

Publisher EMA has announced that they’ll be producing a number of 10 minute video clips about the German mangaka working for them. Ultimately, the clips will be put together and will be available on a DVD, “Mangas Made in Germany“.

The first clip (available as a stream or download on the site) contains interviews and info about the EMA-girls: Alexandra Voelker (Catwalk v1, v2), DuO (Independent, Mon-Star Attack v1, v2), Gina Wetzel (Orcus Star), Lenka Buschova (Freaky Angel v1, v2), and Ying Zhou Cheng (Shanghai Passion, boys love). Also included is a flash movie adaptation of the beginning of Freaky Angel.