Sporadic Sequential
Monday, December 22, 2008
Time To Start My Own Keitai Shosetsu Publishing Company

The latest issue of The New Yorker has an interesting article about the booming popularity of cell-phone novels in Japan. There's not a direct connection to comics (although the article does mention that several of the most popular cell-phone novels were adapted into manga, and there's a lovely accompanying illustration by Adrian Tomine), but the dismissive attitudes of detractors reminds me of the resistance comics have faced in becoming more accepted as a legitimate art form. Granted, the descriptions of cell-phone novels make them sound like something I'd absolutely despise — all the depth of a Harlequin novel with the added annoyance of texting shorthand and emoticons — but you can't deny that the format is something Japanese youth are really responding to.

I also found the article interesting because, given the lead time for the US's adoption of Japanese popular culture, I'm guessing there's a good chance that cell-phone novels will be one of interests my then tween daughter will adore that I'll dismiss as a dumb fad. Ah, I can't believe it's already my turn to assume the other side of the generation gap. How time flies!

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