UPDATE: WOW! We hit our first stretch goal! Keep just a little further until our second, so keep sharing this page!!
Do you like the boys love genre? Ever wanted to learn Japanese? Otome's Way has found a way to combine both ideas with our original language learning material, brought to you by our own Ai Yusura and accomplished Japanese teacher Yumiko Akeba. "A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese" is a fun, flirty study guide with an added BL flair! The first volume, released in May 2013, introduced the basics of Japanese pronunciation and writing–including the hiragana and katakana syllabaries–as well as greetings, self-introductions, and counting. As a digital release, it comes complete with interactive charts, moving images, and audio guidance. We've even received rave reviews from Aarin, of Aarinfantasy.com, the biggest and most comprehensive BL-related community on the web!
- "A Fujoshi’s Guide to Japanese 1 by Otome’s Way, is a primer for learning Japanese language…The first thing that caught my attention me was the idea of it being targeted to Fujoshis, which means the contents may contain BL elements. I was amazed with the quality of artwork featured in the first few pages – it is fully colored and in manga style too… To learn Japanese by yourself, like through a normal guide or CD, is not easy. You will have to always go through it in a daily routine, where it may get boring. But the fujoshi guide is not boring in this sense and you will want to keep clicking on the audio especially…"
But we at Otome's Way know that learning how to count to ten, state your name, and say good morning to fellow BL fans is hardly a comprehensive language experience. How good is a beginner's textbook without an intermediate to follow it?
That's where this Kickstarter comes in! We're trying to get enough people interested in our visually tantalizing study guide to donate toward creating the second volume in the Fujoshi's Guide series. After all, once you've got the basics down, you have to keep building on them!
As you might guess, writing, drawing, and recording a language textbook and accompanying listening CD requires both time and money. This second volume will incorporate what was covered in the first volume and add new grammar points, vocabulary, and interesting cultural anecdotes to further instruct the readers in both the language and Japan in general. Of course, all of this will be introduced by the attractive characters within the book's storyline, making for an intriguing and memorable teaching tool.
Unlike the majority of the Japanese teaching material available now, A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese takes a very modern, practical approach to Japanese, including an introduction to informal/standard sentence structure. Many students find it difficult to understand conversational Japanese because their textbooks are both out-of-date and place a high importance on the standard formal speech forms (known as "desu/masu forms"). In volume 2, the colloquial speech pattern (or "da form") will be covered early on along with the standard formal speech and honorific forms. This approach is meant to help learners that watch Japanese anime, film, or TV dramas as a form of language listening practice. Nothing is more important than listening to and picking up on native, naturally spoken dialects and sentence flow when learning a second language. Fujoshi's Guide 2 aims to help Japanese enthusiasts by laying down a foundation for them to understand what they're reading and watching in their everyday life by describing common verb forms and updated vocabulary that people really want to know.
- 180 pages of informative text and illustrations written by the extraordinarily talented team from the original Fujoshi's Guide, Yumiko Akeba and Ai Yusura. Depending on how much support we receive, we can add additional illustration pages as we proceed!
- Digital recordings of the textbook conversations, listening sections, and vocabulary lessons performed by rising young vocal talent in Japan. In the previous volume, we also included audio segments of the main characters' conversations and pronunciation guides for the Japanese vocabulary. We intend to invite the same professional voice actors to reprise their roles for this new volume.
- Downloadable content in various formats so that you can store the study guide on the device of your choice. Previously Fujoshi's Guide was only available in a few very specific formats. We're planning on increasing the types of downloadable content so as to make the material accessible from a wider variety of devices and platforms.
- Grammar content covering demonstrative forms, adjectives, possessives, and more verbs and vocabulary. This includes practical examples of the different levels of formal and informal speech.
- Kanji character matrices totaling about 120 new symbols to build off of the writing examples from volume 1. Easy-to-use charts will be added to the backs of each chapter for reference.
Textbooks involve quite a lot of effort and time from a wide range of people. Digital releases are no exception. In order to make A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2, we'll need support from our writer, illustrator, proofreaders, translators, voice actors, coordinators, and most importantly OUR FANS! We'll be working round the clock for 3 weeks trying to get the word out on this truly revolutionary study material and drum up as much support as possible!
It's our intention to begin work on the new material as soon as we finish our Kickstarter funding. If we start pulling the book together in November, we hope to have it released in about 4-to-5 months, spring 2014.
1. Writing the text, including grammar explanations, examples, audio script, and comic text = $3,000
2. Translation of the text into natural, native English in addition to the Japanese = $2,000
3. Proofreading/editing for fluency and professional quality = $500
4. Vocal recording of the listening CD by professional voice actors (the same actors from the first volume will reprise their roles) = $1,000
5. Illustration fee for the inset images as well as comic panels and still art = $3,000
6. Sound engineering for the voice tracks, including studio fee = $3,000
7. Publishing design including the cover, layout, etc. = $500
Completing this project is going to be a big task, but if we manage to surpass our goal of $13,000, we've got a few extra things we'd love to accomplish. As our funding progresses, we'll add additional information about these goals as they become relevant.
Stretch Goal $15,000: If we manage to collect over $2,000 more than our initial goal, we'd like to include an additional workbook with practice problems along with the download of A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2. These problems would be designed to accompany the second volume while still building off of the material covered in the first.
Stretch Goal $16,000: At $3,000 more than our original plan, we can make a supplemental conversation CD of the main characters, Alexis and Shou. Included with the download would be a transcription of the Japanese and an English translation of the dialogues so that you can follow along with the characters as they read their lines.
Stretch Goal $21,000: And finally, if we can make at least $21,000 total, we plan to make a limited edition print version of the textbook. Like the digital download, it would be in full color and approximately 150 pages in length. Due to the difficulties and expense in creating a physical copy, we would limit release to about 50 total.
$1: An original desktop wallpaper for your computer, drawn by one of our talented artists! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 ]
$5: The above reward + an original icon set sized for the Otome's Way forums, drawn by our talented artists! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 ]
$10: The above rewards + the donator's name listed on special thanks section of the Otome's Way website! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 ]
$25: The above rewards + a bilingual pdf download of Halliwell Hotel and other art drawn by Ai Yusura! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013]
$55: The above rewards + a download of the new Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2! The first 50 people to pledge at this level also get an exclusive postcard drawn by Ai Yusura! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$100: The above rewards + a download of Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 1 -OR- an exclusive A4 poster signed by both the writer and illustrator of Fujoshi's Guide -OR- a download of the Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2 Workbook! Those of you who might already own the first Fujoshi's Guide can opt for the poster, or workbook option instead! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$130: All prizes thus far excluding the exclusive postcard. This means you can get both the download and exclusive poster from the $100 pledge tier! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$200: The above rewards + an Otome’s Way postcard set, a folding fan, a A4 poster set, and an original Otome's Way t-shirt! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$300: The above rewards + a hand-written thank you from both the writer and illustrator and the donator's name listed in a "special thanks" section in the back of A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2! [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$500: The above rewards + a portrait of you or your original character drawn by Ai Yusura! (limit 30) [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items and portrait, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$1,000: All rewards up to the $300 tier + you or your original character appear in the background of one of the book's illustrations! (limit 10) [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$2,000: All rewards up to the $300 tier + you or your original character are given a speaking cameo in A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2! (limit 3) [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
$7,000: All rewards up to the $2,000 tier + The Fujoshi Vacation Special: 2 nights accommodation in Ikebukuro, a tour of Otome Road, and dinner with the Otome's Way staff at a butler or BL café! We'll work around your schedule, so find a time when you can fly yourself to Japan and we will show you around our favorite area of Tokyo! (limit 2) [Estimated delivery: Dec 2013 for the downloadable rewards, Jan - Feb 2014 for the shipped items and portrait, Mar 2014 for the download of Fujoshi's Guide 2]
Check back here on our Kickstarter page for updates on our funding progress and other new info from Otome's Way! To see more of our updates and new releases, see our official website, Facebook page, Twitter account, Youtube, or Tumblr accounts!
If this Kickstarter project comes to fruition, we will continually update our official website, Facebook page, Twitter and Tumblr accounts with sketches of the manga panels and tidbits from the study material to whet your appetite for the final product! Expect updates on how things are progressing, as well as comments from our writer, artist, and translators!
In the spirit of language-learning camaraderie, the SpanishSmart Kickstarter has graciously linked our project on their site! Give their Spanish language learning project a look, too, and help them out!
Risks and challenges
What if something goes wrong with our project?
So what happens if we hit a snag in our creation of A Fujoshi's Guide to Japanese volume 2? Unexpected circumstances and issues are known to arise in any project, but here are a few specific challenges we may encounter.
- Hold-ups with the writing: Though the author, Yumiko Akeba, is currently brainstorming and writing up her preliminary drafts of the new chapters, there is always the potential for something to come up that will take more time than projected. In addition, all the writing will have to be translated and proofread for natural fluidity and quality. This may take longer than expected, because the quality of the finished project is of utmost importance to us. However, we intend to work as quickly as we can while maintaining the high quality we strive for in all of our releases.
- Delays with the art: If the writing does so happen to take longer than anticipated, there is a possibility that the art will also be delayed. As our textbook is in full-color, it will take longer to draw than a normal manga would. However, both the artist and author are professionals and will do their utmost to complete the project on time while bringing you the best quality learning materials. We will hold ourselves to a serious schedule and provide our fans with updates on the book's progress as we go.
- Stretch goals: Should we attain our stretch goals, our book release may be delayed in order to complete the additional material. A workbook of supplemental material would take time to write and illustrate, as would an additional listening CD. If we manage to raise enough money to publish physical copies of Fujoshi's Guide 2, those would take more time to format, print, and distribute (further details as they become relevant). Still, under all of these circumstances we will aim to release the digital copy of Fujoshi's Guide 2 in March 2014.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (21 days)