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It’s 9am, and I’m sitting on my living room couch, and thinking about how one year has already passed since I moved to Hawaii, and all of the things that I wanted to achieve in that time that kind of got lost in the mire. I don’t know why…. Is it because I have been depressed off and on? Is it becauese I feel like I have remarkably little control over my life? Is it because I’m so blindingly poor that I had to put my rent on credit cards for the last two months and they’re maxed out?

I should focus on the good things. This is my one-year anniversary with Hawaii, after all! It’s longer than I stayed in Aberdeen, and 1/9th of the time that I spent in Tokyo. Gosh, I miss Tokyo, now that you mention it. A LOT.

Is it because I’m in a new relationship? Thuy and I have been going out for three months as of today, but it feels like at least a year and a half. I feel like I know her so intimately, and like I want to spend the rest of my life with her. I love her so, so much. Sometimes I’m afraid, though, that she’ll choose to walk away from me because I love her too much, as if my love could be a heavy, unyielding weight pressed down upon her that she’ll want to run from. So, I think that I should be independent and not clingy. Only to realize that I miss her too much, and am scared to lose her.

I guess that’s how it goes?

I’ve always loved my blog, so it’s going to be my therapy right now. Let’s see how this goes? Thuy is sleeping in my room, and I’m alone on the couch, writing and thinking about so many things. I’m going to work on an art piece for my comic now– the cover. Maybe, maybe I can finish today? If so, that would certainly be reason to celebrate!

It’s scary, I have to admit it. Nothing is safe, nothing is sane. If I don’t make enough to live, then I’ll be kicked out of the room that I’m renting, and then what will happen?

But.. I’ve decided to take a huge gamble! It’s now or never, and I am really tired and stressed-out from waiting for so long for the stars to align (basically for me to win the lottery, lol). Forget that! I’ll make my own destiny!

I’m going to start up my manga production company! What does that mean? That means that I’ll make it my full-time job to draw manga and put it out, and hope really strongly that I don’t crash-and-burn! After my own manga, I will grow to hopefully put out manga by other people, and amazing light novels, and all sorts of fun goods. I’m getting an agent, too, who will help me book conventions to come and speak and meet everyone and spread knowledge about making manga, and living in Japan. 

But, right now, what I need is money! I don’t want to ask for donations or anything; I want to work for it, my very hardest!! (Although, I honestly won’t refuse it if you want to invest in a startup. You can send me donations through Paypal to hinoai@hotmail.com if you’re a giver.) I really want to give people something awesome in return for their money, though! This means that I’m going to open back up commissions! I’m only taking a limited number (enough to earn what I calculated that I need to survive for now), so this is your chance! It’s maybe the only chance that you’ll get for a while to get a custom little portrait from me, so I highly encourage that you take advantage as soon as you can!

You can order them from my Etsy shop NOW, for a limited-time: https://www.etsy.com/shop/JamieismPro

I tried to imitate Grace’s style… did I succeed? It sort of ended up halfway in-between our styles, lol. I’m no master imitator like that guy who did those Sailor Moon portraits, that’s for sure!

Oh, wait, what was I talking about? This is going to sound really advertise-y, but I’m not getting paid for this. I’m writing it because I want to. As in, I really, really loved these books SO much!

One evening, I was especially missing Japan (I do that a lot, especially when I’m stressed-out or upset. I am increasingly thinking that I’ll end up moving back someday, but anyways!), and I was browsing Amazon for some retail therapy. Grace’s book, My Japanese Husband Thinks I’m Crazy, had come up about a million times in the search results, but I always ended up passing it by because I wasn’t married. I didn’t think that out experiences would be all that similar. One night, though, I decided, what the hey, I’d go to her blog that the book was compiled from, and read the comics there. What could I lose but time, anyways, right?

Oh, I used up a lot of time, but it wasn’t a loss at all! I fell in love with her cute, quirky style, the craziness in which she lives her life (we have similar ways of thinking about a lot of things), and the gung-ho positive note with which she wrote. She’s also in-and-out of depression, like me. Her stories made me chuckle, and I related to them SO MUCH, and started to miss Japan 687,5492 times more. Really. (Thanks, Grace) So, I liked her Facebook page, and saw that she was writing a second book. When I saw that she was looking for people to review her new book, I swallowed my fear and sent her an email.

I don’t know why, but I find this sort of email really nervewracking! It’s like, how will fangirling “Hi, I really love your work, you are so talented and I am a huge fan! I related to your experiences a lot, and here is info about me, too, just in case…” come across? She’ll think I’m weird, right? It will seem braggy that I mentioned my stuff, right? But I do that so that people get a sense of who I am….. aaaah! You guys know what I mean, right? Anyways, the email that I got back was long and sweet, and she even knew who I was and had read my blog! AHH! I’m glad that I swallowed my fear.. speaking of which, I really need to write her back now. ^o^;;

So, I read both books, and that was the point of this post, right? They were so, so awesome! She gave me the e-books for free before publication, but right now, EVERYONE can get them for free on Kindle! Go, quickly, before the free promotion ends!

 

Not that more-than-free is a bad price AT ALL! They’re SO definitely worth it! The print versions are definitely on my Wishlist (which I use as a to-buy list, although you’re welcome to send me a surprise present from it anytime if you want to make my day!) for me to get one day. Unless someone beats me to it! Which reminds me, I want to send Grace a copy of The Princess of Tennis, too. :)

Hawaii in Panorama

I was just thinking about all of the panoramas that I’ve taken with my iPhone in Hawaii, and I thought, why not post my favorites? PS: The iPhone panorama feature is soooooooo much fun! I don’t need a new hobby, but it just happened! I’m powerless to resist!

…wow, that took a lot longer than I thought it would. I hope that you enjoy! *goes back to work*

(Click on the pictures to see them full-size)

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Yesterday, a friend sent me an article about falling in love. You can read it here. It was basically about creating artificial (in my mind) intimacy by answering increasingly personal questions in front of someone, listening to their answers too, and staring into each other’s eyes. I made a joke that I wanted to put all of the answers on my blog and see what happened, and somehow, this actually happened.

Don’t blame me! Okay, blame me. I am sure that nothing will happen except that you’ll all tell me to stop talking about myself and get back to drawing so that I can launch my webcomic on time, and finish all of the commissions that I’m doing, then get mangas out and samples sent out and… ahhh, so many things! Right now, though, I just finished a run, and I’m feeling like I want to write. Here we go. :)

ANSWERS: The 36 Questions that lead to love (answered as best I can, as my partner right now is a cat meows in Japanese). ((Click here to read on about how crazy I am!))

Alooohaaaaaa!

Whee! I finished reading my friend Marie’s book, Bloody Annoyances. It was a very cute yaoi story (check my review on Goodreads), and I’m super-thrilled to be reading the unpublished second book, so that I can work on the cover. I’m going to be sketching out some ideas as I go through it today. I also want to work on Living Tall in Japan, which looks like it’s going to be published Mondays. I think that I’ll start out with a whole week, though! I’ll work on it this week after the cover illustration is done, and then start next week, I think! I’m so excited!!!!!

Maybe I should do something special….

My entire body hurts today. Yesterday’s Quidditch practice was especially brutal, but in a good way. I think that I really need to get in better shape. I’ve put on a lot of weight in the last three years (about 60 pounds). I can definitely tell, but my friends here say that I don’t look any different from my old photos. Mmmmm…. well, I’ll take my own body’s word for it, as nothing fits at all anymore, and I definitely can’t wear bikinis and look like a model. So it’s off to eat healthy and exercise like crazy, at least as much as I can afford to!

I’ve also started watching Yowamushi Pedal, which makes me feel really, really, reaaaaalllllllly nostalgic for when I was a huge, insane Tenipuri fan. Way before I ever worked for Konomi-sensei! I was a huge fan of Ryoma, and then Kevin. Which makes me think about the time that I cosplayed Oshitari. Oh, those were the days…. I wonder how many photos I have left (I lost them all in a crash, but found copies of some online later), let’s look…

Oh, found them! *inserts into post* I think that I’ll end with that for today! I really, really need to get to work. It wouldn’t hurt to exercise for a little bit. Since I don’t have a car yet, riding my bike to the grocery store would work! *zoom*!

Kawaiikon!!

Yesterday, I had a meeting with Courtney from Kawaii Kon (Hawaii’s annual big anime con, with about 8,000 people).

She is such a sweetie! She was really nice to talk to.

So, I want to give you all some details. I’m going to be running three panels there, as long as no changes pop up:
1) Living in Japan (what it is like living and working as a foreigner in Japan)
2) Working as an Assistant Manga artist in Japan (you know what I’ll talk about here!)
3) Making manga the Japanese way (introducing the materials and then using them to make a short manga or illustration)

How cool is that?!

I’m looking for people to join me for the first panel (I have asked some, feel free to write me (jamie@jamieism.com) if you’re going to be there and want to contribute! I’ll also look for more people), and for the last panel, I’m going to look for sponsors. This will be a HUGE challenge for me, because I am really, really shy about asking for that kind of thing. But it would be great for a business, I think, and not much money for them, either.

I also will have a table in Artist Alley, which is a FIRST for me! Oh my god, it’s less than three months away, and I have no idea how I am going to have awesome things for it! I’m not much of a fanart-print person (though I love looking at them!), I’m more of a make-comics/books person. Can I even have enough ready by then?!?!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

Okay, Jamie, stop freaking out! I’ll just post this, and then do some reading/sketching (remember that I’m designing a book cover for a friend? I’m working on that today, then going out for just a little while to say goodbye to Erin and Janet. Aww).

And one last thing… What day of the week do you want me to start publishing my webcomic (Living Tall in Japan– see a few posts down) on? Go here to vote: https://www.facebook.com/jamie.lynn.lano/posts/800043986711018

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