☆ life

Working as an assistant on The Prince of Tennis p27

To see a list of all of the posts in this series, click here. (*^-^*)

So, now you know about my sordid past. I’m sorry. Do you hate me now? 😉

February 10th, 2009 came, and I was still pining away for T. I did get over him eventually, but it wasn’t an overnight change of heart. I was also still pining away for Su-chan, whom I missed like crazy.

Maybe I was naive, and a little bit too much of a romantic idealist at heart, but that’s just the way that I was. During this time of my life, I was crying out for some love and attention, and T had given me a little snippet that I was not ready to lose.

Despite his insistence that this was a purely physical thing, T sent me texts now and then that said things like, Aww, Jamie. 🙂 You’re so sweet. ♣ I’m rooting for you! ♦

I was falling deeper and deeper, and there wasn’t much that I could do to stop it.

My diary from the time read:

It’s not much. But I don’t want to ask for much. I just hope… hope so badly, that by trying to understand him, and by doing the best that I can, that I can make this into a lasting relationship. Or a real relationship, for starters. ^^ It’s touch-and-go right now, but I really, really want to give it a shot *sparkles* Finally, I truly want something, and I truly want to open my heart. As much as it has the potential to hurt, I have to believe that it has the potential to be good, too. Please, please I hope that I’m not wrong. ♥

Innocent and naïve, yes. But something happened during this time to distract me. If you don’t know, I was also working another job at the same time as the Tenipuri one. I was writing a monthly column for an english-language newspaper in Japan called Asahi Weekly.


One of my articles for Asahi Weekly.

Since I could work on writing in my spare time between going into the studio, it was pretty convenient. It didn’t pay very much, but I liked writing, and I was publishing my writing, photos, and art in the paper, so it was a great fit for me! ^^ However, I suddenly got an email from my editor at Asahi Weekly asking if they could pass my contact information on to a TV company, because they might want me to star in a new TV show for them.

Wait. What?!?! That certainly took my mind off of T and Su-chan for a while! Well, for a minute or two at least! I had never acted in _anything_. In fact, I’d always sort of avoided the stage because I hated my terribly hideous teeth (I hate them! But veneers are still outside of my price range. I will get them one day!) and poochy tummy.

But, well.. if I had the guts to go in and meet Konomi-sensei in his studio for the first time, I definitely had the guts to go and meet a little tv crew! What were a few cameras compared to my idol? Hell, I had, um.. with another idol of mine (see last post), and seriously, tv was scary, but nothing in comparison!

That’s how on February 13th at 4:55 pm, I found myself fanning my armpits in the elevator of the Japan Cable Television building in Roppongi.


The JCTV building. It’s not so scary if you’re not riding in an elevator inside.

The producer for the TV program didn’t meet me at the front of the office, so I looked out over the sea of desks, the reek of stale cigarette smoke in the air, and asked meekly if I could be directed to Hiroko.

Hiroko was so sweet, and over the months that we worked together she became a bit like a mother to me. So did Cho-san (the first director), Murakami-san (the second director), and the cameramen/ soundmen, and assistants that I worked with over the next few years. I didn’t know it right then, but I’d end up helming this TV show for four years, once a week. As it was, I was so nervous for just the interview that I nearly wet my pants and all I wanted to do was leave. I couldn’t believe this strange thing was happening to me!

But I left the JCTV office that day with a terrifying offer to work on the tv show with them. All I had to do was show up and say things and be interesting on camera. In Japanese. Me, who had ZERO experience in front of a camera, except for one video that a friend took of me at a hotel jumping up and down crazily in front of an elevator during college. Somehow, talking to me at a table had been enough assurance for them that I would be great host material.


The aforementioned video of elevator jumping.

Actually, terrifying is putting it lightly. I told them that I needed to ask Konomi-sensei to make sure that I could work both this and the assistant job and I would get back to them.

I both wanted the job (because it was new and might be interesting), and didn’t want the job, because I hated the way that I looked and I was completely and utterly terrified.

At least I wasn’t thinking about T.


The Pop’n Press (as it came to be called) crew came to be another family for me!

Well, until the next day, which was Valentine’s Day. I made brownies, thinking that I would give them to him, but he was busy, and I ended up spending Valentine’s Day at a pasta restaurant with my roommate and a few friends, pining over my doomed, failing one-sided love affair. I later drowned my sorrows in brownies and tried to eat away the stress of people wanting me to be on TV.

Well, through this all, there was at least one thing that I could count on, and that was Konomi-sensei calling us back into the studio dungeon to work on Chapter 3 (woo).

On the 19th, I caught a train back in to Chiba to the studio, where a number of interesting things happened. Do you know what happens in the Tenipuri offices around Valentine’s Day? I bet that you can guess, but you’d be incredibly underestimating.

I had no idea what kind of “work” lay in store for me!

All of which is coming up in part 28! I’m feeling that I should call this whole autobiography The Princess of Tennis. What do you think?

See you soon with part 28! Please leave comments; the more that I get, the more motivated I am to write! (Aww, who am I kidding, I’m motivated anyway!) *^-^*

(762 geeks have read this)

Hi! This is Jamie Lynn Lano! I am a Washington State (USA) native who: ☆ Holds a Bachelors of the Arts in Media Arts & Animation from AiPx. ☆ Worked as an assistant mangaka in Japan for Konomi Takeshi on The Prince of Tennis. ☆ Was an essay columnist for Asahi Weekly from 2008-2013. ☆ Was the star of Asahi Pop'n Press on Asahi TV (Japan) from 2009-2013 ☆ Was a write for Metropolis magazine in 2010. ☆ Has kept a blog foreeeeeeeeever! First and Current blogs.

2 Comments

  • Sinclair Gray

    Can’t wait for part 28! I learned 2 new techniques from reading this and I”m glad I found this! If you need any assistance on your manga I’d love to help!

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      I need so, so much assistance drawing backgrounds! I can’t pay, though, so until then I’m going to trudge on on my own! 😀
      Keep checking back– I should be able to post the next part in the next few days! 🙂

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