Article by Aki Naoe
Isekai fantasy for women encourages you to be yourself
── How did the new comic imprint come to life?
── That's how popular Isekai fantasy for women has become, huh?
── What are the key features of Isekai fantasy for women?
Shitara: Another key feature is that many stories tend to begin with an unfortunate situation. The hero has to face adversity (a route that leads to doom, a broken engagement, or being forced to marry) but they immediately manage to turn the situation around. Many of the protagonists pursue their own identities. Instead of getting caught up in misfortune, they just try to be themselves regardless of the circumstances, and as a result, they inspire people who end up converging around them. One of the appeals of the genre is also that it encourages you to be yourself.
── It works as an affirmation for all otaku ladies out there.
Noble girls, saints, Chinese aristocracy, and Japanese brides
── This time's contest is split into two categories: "works about noble girls and saints" and "works about Chinese aristocracy and Japanese brides". What are the main characteristics of each sub-genre?
── From what you said, it seems like romance plays a key role in Isekai fantasy for women.
── So what matters is not causing stress to the reader.
A different world, but still down-to-earth
── The contest announcement emphasizes how entries should have a happy ending. Ending aside, are there any other features that make an entry more suitable for commercialization?
── The setting might be that of a different world, but the characters and story should be very much down-to-earth.
── Does this mean that writers can write about any kind of world they want?
── Why did you choose specific sub-genres for the contest's categories?
── This contest calls for original novels that can also work as manga. How is the writing process different from regular novels?
── What kind of story works well as a comic?
── Do you have a message for those authors who are debating entering the contest?
The "Isekai fantasy manga original story contest" is underway!
Ichijinsha, who we interviewed for this article, is now accepting submissions for original novels in the genre of Isekai fantasy for women!
The first prize winner will receive a cash prize of 300,000 JPY (approx. 3000 USD). Moreover, their novel will be published under the new Ichijinsha novel imprint and get a manga adaptation under the company's new manga imprint!
Other remarkable works will also be considered for publication and manga adaptation.
The deadline for submissions is January 16, 2022. We are looking forward to the entries!
Note: All contest entries must be written and posted in Japanese.