Tutorial – Manga Writing : 03

Hey its been a long time since I posted a tutorial, so here it is.

First of all I want to apologize for my previous tutorial (Tutorial – Manga Writing : 01) the part where I talked about 3 Act structure I found out its bullshit :P, but I wont delete it because it shows my inexperience which is important coz you wont become Geroge R.R. Martin or Paulo Coelho  or Eiichiro Oda or Tsugumi ohba the first time you write a script.

“You learn to draw by drawing and learn to write by writing.”

Reading or watching tutorials wont take you far. Reading books helps a lot though, read anything you can get your hands on good or bad, old or new, fiction or history or romance or anything else, if its bad figure out why its bad and how can you make it better or if its good try to notice what makes it a good read.

So putting all that 3act structure crap aside lets start fresh.

Now a story can have as many acts as you want 3, 15, 22, 50, 100 or 100+ but speaking specifically for manga which publishes 22 pages weekly or biweekly or monthly the last page should end in a way that readers cannot wait to read the next chapter thats where a act structure will come in place, in the beginning of the chapter you start building a situation and as you get to the end, your story should reach almost to its peak (emphasis on the word almost), you leave your readers involved and hanging (remember this will only work with a serialized manga with multiple chapter, one shots have a different approach)

I am reminding you again forget about the 3act structure if you want to make a complex story, it will kill your script.

Q> Why is the 3 act structure that I talked about in previous tutorial so bad?

A> I am working on a story which is extremely complex, its 14-17 times more complex than one piece. While creating it and read some good books I realized that none of them had a 3 act structure if these stories were limited to a 3act structure one piece, naruto or bleach would end in lest than 10 chapters, avatar would be a 12 minute short film, harry potter or A Song of ice and fire or The alchemist would be a 100 pages short novels. 3 act focuses on just one character this wont work in any story with multiple protagonists like one piece, naruto, bleach, harry potter, game of thrones etc. and their are so many more draw backs to it. Read this to learn why 3Act structure is bad – http://www.raindance.org/why-3-act-will-kill-your-writing/

Creating a story is not an easy task you may think it is coz all you come up with is a concept which is quite easy to come up with but developing it into 100-600 chapters in a progressive way by which your readers feel involved and connected is the hard part. A story has so many components concept, plot, character profiles, environment, setting, back story, hints of future, etc. Don’t feel down no writer before or after you got or will get it right in their first try even the one with a born talent. I myself am struggling though it but as I said earlier we can only learn to write by writing. Have some people proof read it for you of different age groups and non professionals, this will help you know what readers like and don’t like.

I dont know how much this helps, but I am happy I posted it.

One more this the reason I might not post things anytime soon is I have graduated from college and working at a very low paying job as it is the only thing I can get my hands on and other times I draw, paint, read and write. I will post but not anytime soon.

Tutorial – Manga Writing : 02

This tutorial is an update to Manga Writing, so check that out before reading this or you can read I am gonna talk bout software for writing and pattern to write your story in.

Without wasting any time lets get to it.

Software for writing your concept, synopsis or entire script

3 Software that I have used and that I recommend are:

01. Final Draft – (free & paid)

02. yWriter – (free)

03. Celtx – (free & paid)

01. Final Draft : Right now they have the released 9th version of it but I am using 8 or 8.3. I mostly use final draft to write down my concepts (only concepts). The software is really good and offers a lot of features like thesaurus, text to speech (you can make the software read your script – really cool feature), scene cards (different scenes in different cards (can change the cards color is required)), and many more, check there website for more details. This is also the industry standard software for script writing even James Cameron uses it for Avatar.

02. yWriter : This was the first software that I ever used for writing script, let me say it looks slacky like a windows 98 software(app) but it is very functional. Its user friends, it has a lot of tools to work with like story board time line, database for characters, items(props), locations and not just a simple data base you can add alternate names, images, notes, bio, goals, description of characters. There are a lot more features to this app which even I haven’t explored. Use it if you are a geeky writer and need a feature rich script writing software.

03 Celtx : This is my favorite, I used this to write my scripts. Its very easy to use. It also have a very detailed database more detailed than yWriter. It is available for both mac & pc. Celtx has cloud features you have to pay for it but its not that expensive or if you dont need cloud you can just download their free version. They have a lot of third part tools too, but again you will have to pay for it.

Download their free version, try them for 30 days and decide for yourself that which one is better for you.

Lets move to the interesting part.

Pattern for Writing a script

Many of you might not be interested in the software I mentioned your are happy with using word pad or Microsoft word or any other text editing app available to you.

The pattern for manga script writing goes this way.

Replace the things inside parenthesis () as required for your script

Page 1 : (number of panels on the page)

Panel 1 : (Wide, top down exterior or arial view of city traffic, we see the man and his surroundings)

        Caption : (Add captions if required like why the man was in traffic and other details)

    Panel 2 : (Mid, front view of man bumping into a woman, we see the woman from behind)

        Caption : (There was a soda can lying on the ground man tripped on it and bumped into the woman)

Man

(thinking – what a beautiful lady)

(saying with sorry and calm tone)

Ah, Miss I am so sorry.

Woman

(saying with humble tone)

Its ok sir.

Alright this was the easiest and most productive way to write script for manga writers even if you don’t draw your own manga, you can write down every last detail in caption so that the artist can draw close to your imagination.

The best part is the pattern I just described is available in all three software so you wont have to waste time writing Page 1, Panel 1 , Caption the above mentioned software will do it automatically for you.

As for me I only use software now to write down the concepts that I think or dream of. For writing entire script I do a process called “Nemu” in Japanese you can call it storyboarding its the rough layout of the actual manuscript. This way is more creative for me as I can doodle it up while thinking of it and make changes as required. These are some examples of it.

 Find the way that suits you the best. I’ll post update on Writing tutorial as I get more skilled in it.

Thank you for reading ^^

Tutorial – Manga Drawing

How to make Manga? How to be a mangaka? How to draw manga? The most asked questions and the most awaited post of all time, it took me time to make this because I am working my drawing skills as well. So without wasting any time lets get to it ^_^

01. Copy : “Hey rak you want us to start our career by copying?”. That’s right people you have to start by copying other mangaka that’s the 1st step. Every one does it even great mangaka like Kishimoto sensei, Oda sensei, obata sensei, kubo sensei every one started by copying their favorite mangaka. I started by copying Kishimoto sensei. You do the same start by copying your favorite mangaka.

02. Head : Start by practicing head and I mean the whole head – different jaw shapes, hairs, eyes, nose, mouth, ears and don’t just draw the front view try drawing it from different angles like 3/4 view, side view, top view, bottom view, back view. Get familiar with these angles.

03. Expression : Your head means nothing if you cant express fleeing through it. Learn every possible expression. Buy a small desk mirror or have a webcam act it yourself that’s the best thing.

 (not my work)

04. Human Anatomy : Yeah I know its tough but you are not in medical school you don’t have to learn them by name like sternum, scapula, pectoral, deltoids etc just learn to draw them. This is very important you need very good skills of human anatomy because if you understand a normal person’s anatomy you can enhance it to make a super hero, beasts or take it down a notch to make a fat guy or a skinny boy you can do as you wish once you have mastered human anatomy. Practice male and female, young and old there are differences in every body types study them carefully.

05. Dynamic Actions & poses : Once you have anatomy skills this wont give a lot of trouble just kidding it will 😛 not very hard though creating cool poses in perspective takes time. Be sure to be able to create any pose its important.

 Pose

 Dynamic Action

06. Perspective : There are three kinds of perspective 1-point, 2-point, 3-point this part is easy its just needs a little time to sink in as you will have to draw your characters and other stuff in perspective.

 1 point perspective

 2 point perspective

 3 point perspective

Try to sketch as light as possible as u will need to erase it after inking.

Now as the sketching part is clear lets move to inking part

I am no good at this part yet, but still I’ll tell u things that I do to get better.

I don’t know what to you use to ink your work some use traditionl ink dip pens with g-nib, maru nib, kaburu nib and school nib ad some use micron pens. (more on tools, equipments and papers in a later post)

01. Straight line : Its as easy as it sounds, might take a little time getting used to as your fear of messing things might come in between, it happens to me all the time.

02. Curves :  Practice both long curves like on face, hair and small curves like in eyes and nose.

03. Flicking : I don’t know how to explain this but when you ink hairs rather than following its path precisely try flicking on it to create that broad to thin pattern.

Search for Sycra, Koizu, Sophie Chan and Mark Crilley on youtube for the tutorials they will help you understand it better. I refer to their videos too.

 Happy new year. ^^

Tutorial – Manga Writing

Most of you wont read this article as you want to get to drawing part fast but writing a story is very important, keeping readers interested is the main goal of a manga. Drawing manga is hard work you don’t wanna do it twice for the same script so make sure you script is perfect then move to the drawing process.

Making a manga requires two things :

01. Manga Writing : A good story is heart of manga, your story should have the power to keep people interested in it. Art has the privilege to be good or not so good but if story isn’t good it wont sell.

02. Manga Drawing : In a manga they only way to explain your story to reader is by art so art process is as import as writing a story.

Well then lets start

Things you need to write a good story :

01. Concept : You concept can come from anywhere like a dream, a person you met, a real life event but mostly concepts come from others concept. Let me give you can example u must know Naruto even if you don’t know keep reading. Masashi Kishimoto sensei once said in an interview that the concept of Naruto came from concept of Goku from Dragon Ball Z. (1st pic – goku, 2nd pic – naruto)

I know you can make out the similarities like blonde spike hair, blue-orange dress color, and they have a similar attitude too (shounen attitude). So what i am trying to say its complete fine to get inspired by other stories or concept and then create your own be sure not to steal it completely though.

02. Genre : Now decide on your genre its very important. Lets have an example imagine you have a concept of a love story now a good writer can make a love concept in a horror genre (like protagonist and heroin face an awful lot of horror stuff but they help each other and in the end they survive and fall in love) or a horror concept in love genre. You can introduce comedy genre in a suspense story anything is possible, widen your comfort zone, you might only be good with writing thrillers or love stories but introduce other genre in your story too, it creates a dynamism, readers like it but don’t over do it, it will cause negative effect.

03. Main character : Even if you cant draw, doodle something on a page because when you start writing story your biggest problem will be a blank page and you wont know where to start.

Maintain a notebook or a sketchpad or a binder for each project and keep everything in it like ideas, sketches or doodle, panels, names, schemes etc.

04. SET : Now you need a set or world to place your story in for example World of ninjas in Naruto, world of pirates in one piece or soul society in bleach, you can use our existing world or past or future, define this world in as much detail as possible, don’t fear if you don’t know how to sketch, write down everything, with the help of your details the artist will be a able to create something close to your imagination.

Naruto World

One Piece World

Bleach World

05. B.M.E : You must be wondering what does B.M.E stands for, well its simple – Beginning Middle End.

You must have heard about the 3 act rule, same thing applies here too. Think of a story as a music you cant have everything on high note then it will be just noise, u need to have a phasing in a story, ups and downs.

What is 3 Act rule?

Its like this :

Act 1: The protagonist need to accomplish some thing so he/she sets on a journey to complete their goal. At the end of act 1 he/she is very sad about things in their life but somehow gets motived about their goal and moves forward.

Act 2 : The act 2 can also be called the point of no return, there is so much at stake that there no way the protagonist can turn back. At the end of act 2 he/she is all defeated and demotivated the ending of act 2 and starting of act 3 are the peak of the story as the end of act 2 should be the lowest point the protagonist can hit with his failure and ~

Act 3 : ~ The starting of act 3 should be the highest point he can achieve in his life the point when he has accomplished his goals. The end of act 3 is just to end the story in a way that everything after it looks good, of course in your mind that’s how writers keep the story alive by making people think about their story even after its ended.

A really simple chart to understand.

This is how I write my stories, I hope this helps you. I myself break the rules of story making many times, you can do it too. Remember a story will get published if it is good – no other factor is involved.

Keep a watch.
(I’ll be posting an update to this tutorial in future and I will also make a tutorial on art, all my tutorials will be constantly updated as my skills evolve.)