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Saiunkoku Light Novels in English [Mar. 23rd, 2009|09:27 pm]
saiunkoku monogatari


Hello all you wonderful Saiunkoku fans! I'm currently in the process of corrupting introducing yet another of my friends to Saiunkoku, and she's thoroughly interested.

So I have a favor to ask all of you. I'm currently doing some research to gauge interest in publishing the Saiunkoku light novels in English, and I'm hoping I could have a minute or two of your time. If you are at all interested in reading these books in English, please respond to this poll.

All dollar amounts are in US dollars.

Poll #1370880 English Language Availability Options

Are you interested in reading the Saiunkoku Monogatari light novels in English?


Would you buy the book in hardback (for about $18-$20)?


Would you buy the book as a softcover trade paperback (for about $10)?


Would you buy the book as an ebook through Amazon/iTunes/Fictionwise (Kindle, Stanza, Fictionwise eReader) for about $10?


Which of these three formats would you prefer?

Softcover trade paperback

What other fantasy light novels would you like to read in English?

Thank you for your time!

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[User Picture]From: fusakugyoku
2009-03-24 03:54 am (UTC)
Oh my God, that would be amazing.

Are you talking about actually getting the novels published in the West? Do you have connections or something? How would you go about getting it done? If I can do anything to help, I sooo want these novels!!!
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[User Picture]From: yedijoda
2009-03-24 04:11 am (UTC)
Right now, I'm just looking to see whether there's enough interest in buying the novels to actually justify the costs of producing it. We'll see how it goes from here. ^_^
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[User Picture]From: mobiuswolf
2009-03-24 04:02 am (UTC)
I would absolutely love to be able to read Saiunkoku and several other series in English.

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[User Picture]From: ayako
2009-03-24 04:52 am (UTC)
That would be awesome! I would totally buy the novels.
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[User Picture]From: yankumi
2009-03-24 05:33 am (UTC)
I think it should be noted that if the hardcover is going to be in that price range, the original cover illustrations should be kept as well.

Also, (IF) whoever ends up translating this, please for the love of god do not use the Chinese name conversions for Kou to Hong. It's just so confusing, especially when watching the anime, they say Kou and it reads Hong. We all know The Kou's as Kou's not Hongs.

Hope this goes through, I was excited when the 12K got published, though I'm a bit disappointed they take so long to release.
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[User Picture]From: animationfreak
2009-03-24 06:32 am (UTC)
Very true (about the Kou's turning into Hong's thing) since I got kinda mad at it and only listened to the Japanese when I watch the series on Animax. Yes, Animax followed Geneon (or now FUNimation) for their English dubbing.
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[User Picture]From: kirarakim
2009-03-24 10:40 am (UTC)
It would be awesome if the Saiunkoku novels could be published here. In fact they are probably the light novel I would want to see the most over here.

Although I would much rather only have paperback because I think keeping up with an ongoing series in hardback would cost too much money (and hardback takes up more room on the shelf).
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[User Picture]From: duno88
2009-03-24 10:47 am (UTC)
I really need English version of the novels since I can't find them anywhere they're all in Japanese. Softcover paperback is fine enough! Love to see that in market soon! Thanks for your effort for doing this! :)
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[User Picture]From: nightmole
2009-03-24 11:16 am (UTC)
I'll buy it for sure in any format.
But hardback for Light-novel is quite overdoing it. The book is small afterall.
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[User Picture]From: cairnsy
2009-03-24 11:20 am (UTC)
Out of curiosity, what sort of numbers would you need before you would consider it a project you were willing to undertake?

Count me in as one of those people who would pay the earth buy them in any form. Especially if you started with volume 13 A girl can dream, even if that dream makes no logical sense.
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[User Picture]From: yedijoda
2009-03-24 11:05 pm (UTC)
I'd need to see that there's enough interest to sell several thousand copies, frankly. (So tell your friends and family!)

The numbers here so far aren't bad, though. Considering the good response from the 10% of the comm so far, we haven't ruled out the possibility. But, I'm sorry to say, we would start with volume 1 and go from there. Assuming the books sell enough and each volume keeps selling, we'd get to volume 13 in a few years. ^_^
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[User Picture]From: minerva_one
2009-03-24 12:11 pm (UTC)
As an English-only devotee, I have to say that I have gone to nearly every community far and wide to find snippets or summaries or translations in English after first seeing the subbed anime online. I even went so far as to consider learning Japanese just to keep up with the series, so yes, I would buy them in whatever format for whatever price, doesn't really matter. And I agree with yankumi, the illustrations are a must.

I have no doubt that if the novels were in English, it would only serve to increase the popularity of the series, as the language barrier is a major stumbling block for a lot of people (especially those on my f-list here in the States). I have been particularly determined to know the entire story, and having to rely on summaries and translations is generally too frustrating for many, as we have to go to numerous sites to put the whole story together.

If these come out in English, I would buy several copies and start handing them out as gifts!

Edited at 2009-03-24 12:13 pm (UTC)
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From: grey_damaskena
2009-03-24 12:54 pm (UTC)
I would take the novels in any form I can get them. The day when my Japanese is good enough to read them myself still seems a long way off. I also agree that the illustrations should be kept as they are, since they're so beautiful and compliment the novels so well.

I hope that the level of care taken with these books is similar to that of the Seirei no Moribito first novel, which was beautifully designed. I'm perhaps strange in this, but . . . the embossed cover . . . the special typeface in navy . . . the excellent design . . . now that is a book you can be proud to own! Careful book design has been sadly lacking lately, at least in the American markets. I'm not sure that many people share my preference for and joy in hardback editions, though.

I feel that the English-speaking Saiunkoku fandom is still strong despite the fact that the anime ended ages ago. We've been hurt by the foul-up during the DVD release and the halt of online manga releases, but still the interest remains. Saiunkoku has a lot of potential to appeal to a much broader audience if only the access were more readily available.

I didn't have room for it, but I second votes for Mirage of Blaze! I'm sure I could come up with more, but at the moment my mind is blank.
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[User Picture]From: aida135
2009-04-05 12:53 am (UTC)



Thanks for the heads up of the poll in my journal :)

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[User Picture]From: imanewme
2009-03-24 12:56 pm (UTC)
I agree with yankumi that the illustrations need to be included and I second that we all know Kou over Hong. I have rl friends who tried to check out the series but were overwhelmed with the "hunt and peck" nature of reading story summaries, so I too would buy multiple copies and present them as gifts.

Paperbacks are by far the most accessible format. The cost of a hardcover is a hurdle for some, while technology barriers such as limited access to the internet, only having dial-up, and running older systems might keep some from downloading e-books.

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[User Picture]From: yedijoda
2009-03-24 11:07 pm (UTC)
We're thinking that we'd probably offer all three formats. This poll just gives me a good idea of how much of each we're likely to sell.
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[User Picture]From: mirax
2009-03-24 01:15 pm (UTC)
I think Light Novels really are the next step the industry should take, I think there would be a lot of interest, although not as much as manga in general. So many animes now are adaptations of Light Novels, that I think it would be worth the effort, for sure, and it might even become a lucrative business.

Good luck. Saiunkoku is up there on my list of novels I want to read the most, so thank you very much for putting this together!
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[User Picture]From: sakuraember
2009-03-24 03:42 pm (UTC)
The light novels in English would be wonderful:) Then I could understand them and not have to look for summaries, translations of snippets, etc.
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[User Picture]From: wmchichiri
2009-03-24 07:59 pm (UTC)
I wanted to comment based off the poll, I'd pay for a hardback book, but really unless I'm getting illustration pages in color, I don't think it's worthwhile for hardback. If I'm forking over the extra money for a hardback book I want the color illustrations, and if they're not included I'll be irked. :)

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[User Picture]From: hymnia
2009-03-24 09:48 pm (UTC)
English translations of Saiunkoku = one of the dearest, deepest dreams of my fannish heart. Not only would I buy them, but I would totally bug all my friends (on LJ and in RL) to check them out, too (provided the translation/adaptation job is done well). And I can be pretty convincing. :D
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