View Full Version : Advice for wanting to work in anime as a writer

07-25-2014, 08:18 PM
Hi, as the title suggests, I would like some advice in trying to get work in the anime industry, specifically I want to work as a writer. Since I was a kid I have loved writing, specifically writing animation. Though I didn't realize it at the time, many of the shows that I watched and enjoyed as a kid were anime like The Moomins, Medabots, SailorMoon, Pokemon, Digimon, TransFormers: Super God Masterforce, the works of Miyazaki etc. As I grew older my love for anime grew until I had a phase when I disliked it for about 4 years until I fell in love with it again. I don't know exactly what draws me to anime more then western animation which though I like too, it's never appealed to me.

I have researched and watch tons of anime and manga from Sci-fi, fantasy, mech, action, horror to even genres I'm not interested in such as romance and comedy to get the feel and common ideas of anime. I have went through many books, documentaries and interviews to get to see the mind set of anime writers though unfortunately most of the books and lecturers seem to focus on western animation. I've also read through the ideas of Shinto as well as went and research different mythologies and folklore like Aboriginal, Chinese, Roman, Greek etc. I've also tried to learn Japanese but I'll admit I'm struggling with it.

At the moment, I am currently doing a bachelor's degree in film Production to get the feel and expertise as well as to improve my skills as a writer and how working in an environment like a film set or a studio is like. I am currently have between 1-2 years left to go (depending if I choose to go for a master's degree).

So as you can see I am very serious about this. As such I would like some advice/help on some stuff such as what I need to do to become an anime writer, how the Japanese job system is like, how are westerners treated (especially to Bi white Scotsman), where would I get started, which companies pay the best and are the most creatively friendly, where would be the best place to live and any recommendations on books/documentaries/interviews on anime.

08-01-2014, 12:55 PM
You actually have to be a writer. A lot of animes are based not on manga, but on actual novels, including a lot of Miyazaki's stuff, Vampire Hunter D, and the like.

Of course reading "How to Be an Anime CHaracter" might help.

08-01-2014, 04:11 PM
Not gonna happen yo. Japanese companies are very, very hesitant to hire foreigners.

08-01-2014, 04:42 PM
Well.......... I don't know about how you're going to find a job and place to live in Japan. You actually have to have one of these Visa's before even moving there. You can't just say "I'm moving to Japan" and go and expect to start looking for a job. You also have to be fluent in their language. Also I'm not entirely sure how Film Production is going to help you? You picked the wrong major if what you wanted to do was Animation. Film Production and computer animation are two entirely different programs. For starters I'd withdraw from Film and go into animation. From there they'll help you figure out the tools. First you have to learn everything. After that you can specialize in writing OR like mentioned earlier, you actually have to BE a writer. A real writer, not a "I like writing so I write and do nothing with it" Kind of writer.

Over-all unless you're highly specialized in something. You're better off staying in the states.

Foreign people need to have a visa to live and work in Japan. There are 27 kinds of visa established by the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act. However, there are two kinds of visa that the act did not establish. One is a “special permanent resident” visa for foreigners living in Japan from before 1945 by special provisions within the Immigration Act. The other one is for American military men, civilian employees in the American military, and their families who can stay in Japan without a visa under the terms of the treaty of Japan-U.S. Status-of-Forces Agreement.

The 27 categories of visa are as follows: Diplomat, Official, Professor, Artist, Religious Activities, Journalist, Investor/Business Manager, Legal/Accounting Services, Medical Services, Researcher, Instructor, Engineer, Specialist in Humanities/International Service, Intra-company Transferee, Entertainer, Skilled Labor, Cultural Activities, Tourist, College Student, Precollege Student, Trainee, Dependent, Designated Activities, Permanent Resident, Spouse or Child of Japanese National, Spouse or Child of Permanent Resident, and Long-Term Resident.