“Setsu-sensei, what are you looking at?”
After the meeting was over, my supervisor Itou said that to me. Since there wasn’t a lot of movement in my finger across my smartphone, she probably got curious.
“Heeeh, you also look at these types of things.”
“No, actually, my son writes stories, you see. So I was just checking it out.”
“That’s amazing, so your son writes stories. Is it good?”
“Well, it’s complicated. To the point where it is impossible to judge whether it’s interesting or not.”
“I see. Here, let me read it for a bit.”
I handed Itou my smartphone after she said that. She then scrolled through the screen with an insane speed, likely due to her experience as an editor that needs go through a large amount of reading When I first joined, I was really surprised by that speed. A little bit after I handed Itou my smartphone, she removed her eyes from the screen and returned it to me.
“How was it?”
I tried asking her calmly, but I was quite nervous. From a parent, I think that it was quite well written, but I was wondering how a professional would judge it.
“From a plot standpoint, it isn’t interesting.”
“However, the setting is interesting.”
Somehow, I became happy like I was complimented myself.
“Is it alright if I meet with your son once?”
“Y-yeah, of course!”
This was how my supervisor came to meet Yoshiki.
“An original manga, eh, why?”
I was so blown away, that I unconsciously let out a gasp. Despite that, Itou-san’s expression did not break.
“I was allowed to read your story.”
“And, it wasn’t very interesting.”
What is this person trying to say…?
“However, that is when you only look at the plot and development of the story. The ideas and setting on the other hand were amazing.”
This is bad, she said something that made me really happy. Nono, don’t get taken up by everything so easily. There are still a lot of places that I need to improve on.
“S-still, my story isn’t that popular…”
That’s right, the fantasy story that I wrote over the summer wasn’t really that popular. I finished it during the break by updating every single day, but in the end, the number of bookmarks only barely reached the thousands. The ratings weren’t even that high. It would be impossible for a professional to find talent in a work like that.
“I said this earlier, but your work is not interesting in and of itself. There’s no way that it would be popular. What I’m talking about is the good parts, your world building and your setting.”
“But, i-isn’t that what’s supposed to be interesting in a written story. There’s no way that would be nice in a manga.”
“That’s wrong. Only drawing it into a manga would allow your world to shine like it should.”
“Besides, your writing skills are not amazing, and you can’t really express what you want very well. However, if you are able to draw it well, I believe it would definitely be very interesting.”
After replying like that, I ended up looking down. The last time I was complimented this much was in elementary school when I was so happy that I ended up crying instead. What can I say? I’m quite moved.
“That’s how it is. Well? Would you like to try it with me?”
“Umm, will I be able to properly draw what I want?”
“Of course. There are always newcomers who are good at drawing.”
Itou-san look straight at me. Her passion showed through those eyes. Being stared at by eyes like that, there’s no way I can refuse.… I would also want to try and see a different type of world.
“I got it. I’ll try it out.”
I gave her my decision and Itou-san responded smile, and rummaged around before pulling something out from behind her.
“Here. Take a look at this iPad. It has a bunch of different mangas, and articles on how to properly draw. Please read them.”
“Also, this over here is my contact information. Please contact me if you have any problems.”
“Then, that’s all for now.”
Itou-san got up suddenly and gave my father one last greeting before leaving the workplace. After Itou-san left, the usual silence fell on the workplace again. With an atmosphere like this, it felt like what happened earlier was all just a lie. However, the iPad that she gave me was definitely in my hand. Besides, I also have the paper with her contact information on it which is proof that what happened earlier was reality. Does this mean I have a professional editor now…?
Really, this doesn’t feel real. What should I do about this? Panicking a little bit, I turn to face my father who was drawing his storyboard on his desk. Then, he gave me a grin as he looked at me.
“Do your best, Yoshiki.”
There was a slightly happy and teasing tone in those words. Becoming somewhat irritated by my father, I muttered, “I’m leaving”, and left the workplace.
That night, I read the mangas on the iPad that Itou-san had given me. There were so many popular mangas on it that I began feeling worried about whether it was okay for me to read such popular works for free.
Then, the smartphone that was charging on my desk vibrated. Looking at the screen, it was a call from a number that I didn’t know. Slightly suspicious, I pick up the call.
“Hello, who is this?”
“Ah, Yoshiki-kun? It’s Itou.”
I didn’t expect it to be Itou-san. No wait, why does she know my number?
“Why do you know my number…?”
“I asked your father for it.”
Otou-san, there’s something called privacy you know? Well, if it’s Itou-san he probably didn’t mean anything bad by it, I guess it’s fine.
“I see, then, is there something that you need?”
“I forgot to say it earlier today, but I wanted to meet with you for a little bit. Can I see you after school on Friday? You can decide the location.”
“Friday? Friday is a little bit hard…”
“No, part time work.”
“Ah, you do work part time. Did you have something that you want?”
“It isn’t like that, I don’t really have anything I want, but… I thought I’d just try it out.”
“Fuun, got it. Then, how about Saturday?”
“If it’s in the morning then it’s fine.”
“Sounds good. Then, Saturday it is, as for the location … where would you like it?”
“My father’s workplace is fine.”
“Yes, let’s do that then.”
“Y-yeah, let’s do that. Thank you for working so late into the night.”
“Late at night, that’s when the work of an editor really starts, so it’s fine if you don’t worry about it. Then, see you Saturday.”
But, it’s already past ten in the night. Doing even work from now, how long into the night will this editor continue to work? I went to sleep while sympathizing with Itou-san.