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Ryan Dave Jimenez

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Ryan Dave Jimenez last won the day on May 19 2021

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  1. So this will be a short blog post because I just want to announce that my webtoon, "Geisha Epic" is now available online. I just uploaded chapter one to webtoons.com. I thought of uploading to Tapas too but I got turned off that they only allowed 10 MB for a chapter. And chapter 1 of my webtoon is pretty big at 20 MB. Since it's the first chapter I decided not to keep it short and just go for it. If I want to upload to Tapas, I have to divide chapter one into two. And I don't want to do that because I feel like I'm cheating the reader. Making it look like it's longer than it actually is. So I'm passing on Tapas for now. But someday I want to make a webtoon that is exclusively only to Tapas. Because they have some interesting features that webtoons.com doesn't have. If you've been following this blog, thank you so much. I really appreciate it. And no it's not ending. I will still make blog psots as I continue to work on Geisha Epic. I will just switch to my visual novel for now. Check out the debut chapter of my webtoon here: https://cutt.ly/IQpeahC See you in the next blog.
  2. I am three pages or five panels away from finishing chapter one of "Geisha Epic". And I am so excited for that. It's been a long month. I think it took me a month? For this post I want to talk about what a real webtoon is. Because whenever I see someone promoting their webtoon half of them aren't really webtoons. They're either a webcomic, a manga, or a comic strip. And those are all different. Now some might say, does it really matter? They're all comics anyways. But it does matter. There are similarities between them and there are differences too. It's like saying does it really matter? Japanese, Chinese, Thai.... They're all Asians anyway. And that is wrong. A manga is Japan's version of comics For America you have the Marvel and DC, the comic books, and graphic novels For Japan, you have manga. Now manga is always black and white. Sometimes you have colored covers or a few pages are in color but it's usually always black and white. And webtoons are usually always colored. That is the first difference right away. There are webtoons that are in black and white but they are quite rare. I can't even think of a popular webtoon that is in black and white. Can you? And webtoon readers expect a webtoon to be in color. So if your so-called "webtoon" is black and white, it's not a webtoon. Stop calling it that. Next up is a webcomic. These are usually in color so they're webtoons right? No. Why? Because they're read left to right. Webtoons are read from top to bottom. That is the second difference. And I see this mistake a lot. If your so-called "webtoon" is read left to right, it's not a webtoon. Stop calling it that. Finally, we have comic strips. They're colored and are also read left to right but the biggest differentiator is they're very short. Usually four panels or just one page. So if your so-called "webtoon" is a comic strip, call it a comic strip. It's not a webtoon. So what is a webtoon? A webtoon is Korea's version of comics. They were meant to be read digitally, hence the name web. And they are meant to be read using mobile phones, hence the top to bottom orientation where you scroll down to read. And a lot of webtoon creators don't take advantage of that. Webtoons are pretty cool because of its infinite canvas where the reading experience is smoother and seamless. You don't have to turn a page, you don't have to click next, you don't have to worry if you're reading the panels in the right order, you just scroll down. And the panels appear one by one. Things are revealed to you bit by bit. And if you're creative enough you can do a lot of cool things with this scrolling orientation. Manga isn't like that, comic books aren't like that, graphic novels aren't like that, web comics aren't like that, comic strips aren't like that. That is why I have an issue with other creators calling their work a webtoon when it isn't. Because they don't take advantage of that infinite canvas that only webtoons have. Plus, you're spreading misinformation because someone who is not in the know may start thinking that manga are webtoons. When that's incorrect.
  3. That's true. I cringe whenever I see a webtoon artist trying to release a chapter every week. When they're not paid for it. If that's the case, then take your time. Upload it when it's done. Spot on. Comic creators should focus on building a fanbase. Because they don't mind waiting (assuming they're true fans). Kinda like how people are still waiting for Hunter x Hunter to update. Even though it's been years.
  4. I may be 70% done with the first chapter on my webtoon. Which is called "Geisha Epic" by the way. So it means I'm close to uploading this on webtoons.com and Tapas. Which brings up the question, when will I upload chapter 2? How often will I update? And most webtoon artists will say, weekly is the best. It's a good rule of thumb or is the industry standard. And I don't agree with that. The one chapter a week thing started in Japan with Shonen Jump. A magazine containing manga. Any Japanese manga artist who wants to succeed needs to be published in Shonen Jump. That's the only way their manga will get popular. This was before the Internet age. Since Japanese manga artists needed Shonen Jump more than the other way around they had no choice but to follow the rules of Shonen Jump. And that is to release a chapter a week because it's a weekly magazine. And that is the only reason why one chapter a week became the industry standard for Asian comics. There is no other reason. It's not like Shonen Jump did a scientific study that showed one chapter a week is the optimal schedule for human beings to read manga. It's just because they're a weekly magazine. So why release a chapter a week? Why not every two weeks? Or every month? There are manga out there that update monthly. Why do webtoon artists outside Japan who don't need Shonen Jump, who don't need a big publisher anymore because it's the Internet age and you can self-publish, why are you still following that rule? When you don't have to? You can publish anytime you want. Every day, every week, every two weeks, every month, every year, it doesn't matter. Just don't think that it has to be every week because that's the best practice or whatever. Now I know webtoons.com pretty much copied this from Shonen Jump. They also give out contracts to good artists where they get paid a lot of money but have to make one chapter a week. Which is fine. I actually have no problem with that because you get paid. And that's the thing, it's okay if you're getting paid. So you who is probably a part-time webtoon artist, who is just doing this on the side and is not making money from it, why are you following this one chapter a week rule? At least get paid for it right? Stop making it hard for yourself. But why is a week not enough to make one chapter? How many weeks is needed to make a chapter? Actually, seven days is enough to make one chapter. But seven days is not enough to make one QUALITY chapter. Any comic artist can put out a chapter a week. It's easy. Just cut corners. Lower the quality for one. Make it black and white. Don't draw backgrounds anymore. Stop adding details to drawings. Cut down the page count and so on. The problem is when you want a quality chapter in one week. It's like wanting a big house that is also cheap. The fastest car but it has to be cheap. The best smartphone but it has to be cheap. It's not possible. You usually get what you pay for. It's like this, a great story, good looking art, updates twice a week. Choose two. You can only choose two. You can't have all three. So you have a webtoon that updates twice a week and has a great story but bad art or a webtoon with a great story, great art, but doesn't update regularly. You can't have it all in life. I will admit though that nowadays readers are expecting one chapter a week whether it be manga, webtoons, manhua, whatever. They demand weekly chapters. Again it's Shonen Jump who drilled this into our heads that comics should come out weekly. But it doesn't. To answer the question, what will be my update schedule for "Geisha Epic"? Every two weeks or every four weeks. I think that suits my lifestyle, schedule, and art style just fine. Because that's the point of self-publishing right? You call the shots. What do you think? What are your thoughts on this. Comment them below.
  5. In the last blog post I showed what the main characters will look like. After designing the main characters, I designed one more character. Since I already finished the script for chapter 1, I know what characters are needed for the debut chapter. So I realized I needed to design Atsuko. She is the clan's best geisha a very promising prospect with the potential to become the best geisha in the country. I wanted her to look cool and even a bit masculine. A cool chick. She is also always smiling because of how confident she is in her abilities. Now after figuring out how the characters will look, I needed to know how their bodies will look like. So I started designing their clothes. I mainly focused on chapter one. There are more clothes to design and characters to design but I decided to just think of the first chapter. I'm no fashion designer but this is what I came up with. It's based on traditional Japanese costumes. This is what a Head Geisha will wear. Head Geishas are like the principals of a school. They are in charge of everything. They start a Geisha school and they train them. This is what Maikas will wear or "Geishas-in-training". Similar to students in school. After designing the clothes, I did a trial drawing. Combining what the character looks like and the clothes they will be wearing. Here's the main character Yumi. Her magic is fire related. She can generate fire from her hands and use that to fight. Here's Atsuko. Yumi's classmate who is the best student in their school. Her magic is ice. She also generates ice from her hands and uses it to fight. I also made the storyboard for chapter one. A storyboard is like a blueprint to how something will appear. Engineers use blueprints to build machines and artists use storyboards to build creative things. And that's everything I've got so far. I got my storyboard done so I can now start drawing for chapter one. That's very exciting. Thanks for reading. Take care!
  6. I just finished the story. Well, half of it is already done. So I guess it doesn’t count…. But at least the story is going somewhere. I strongly believe in getting a solid foundation for your story right away. It doesn’t have to be the final version but your story should have a version 1. I also moved on to the next step which is the script for chapter one. What about the title? What’s the name of your webtoon? I don’t know yet. It does feel weird that my webtoon is still nameless. I followed a screenplay format for the chapter 1 script. But I wasn’t too strict about it. Ignore the writing too because I’m not really a writer. I just wanted to get my thoughts on paper and decide what will happen in chapter 1. What I like about using a script is, it’s preparing you for the next stages in making a webtoon. For example, this is already the dialogue. This will become the speech balloons. And these descriptions of what’s happening will eventually be for the storyboard. Story? done! Chapter 1 script? done! Now it’s time to draw. It’s time to design the characters. The main character: Yumi Hashimoto. Yumi is the youngest of the five main characters. I also wanted her to look a little boyish or angry to reflect her immaturity but still looking feminine. Since they’re geishas, I also needed to give them accessories like earrings, ribbons, makeup and so on. Because that’s how a real Japanese geisha looks like. Sachiko Takano is the oldest of the main characters. She is also a beautiful, seductive, sexy character. So I did my best to make her look more mature physically. Miho Goda is probably my favorite character. And you will know why when she starts to show her powers. Miho is the strongest and scariest of the main characters. She rarely talks and she gives everyone the creeps. So I needed to make her look gothic. Like a Goth chick. Eiko Maita was supposed to be the tomboy in the group but she didn’t turn out that way. She still looks feminine but not that feminine which is okay I guess. It can probably work. And last but not least is Katashi. The only male in the main characters. He is going to be a badass ninja and hopefully be a cool character. And yeah, he will be the leading man but with who? Who will be his romantic interest? So that’s everything I’ve accomplished so far. Let me know in the comments which character are you most looking forward to?
  7. I’m almost done writing the story. Well almost, almost is the key word there. Just a little bit more and I can finally start drawing. I cannot show you what I’ve written so far because it will contain spoilers. And I do want you to read this webtoon someday. But I want to share with you a cool tool I just discovered. It’s a map generator. Now I know they exist but it’s the first time I actually used one. It’s called Azgaar’s Fantasy Map Generator. And it’s perfect if you’re writing a fantasy story. Like me. Especially for world building. So you can better imagine your fantasy world. Every time you refresh the page it comes up with a new random map. It even comes up with names if you’re too lazy to think of some. Clicking on a place name will get you more information that has been randomly generated for you. And of course you can change it to your liking. You can pan around to check out the map. And the most important part, you can save this map so you can edit it later. Because remember, once you close this tab your map is gone and a new random map will be generated. All in all I found this tool really useful in writing my story. And I hope it can help you out too. Comment below what you think of Azgaar’s Fantasy Map Generator. Or what tools you use to make your writing easier. I’m going back to writing now.
  8. I wrote where I got my webtoon idea from in the last blog post. You can read that first before reading this one. We can start expanding this idea into a full story. It’s time to write! Writing is really hard. It’s harder than drawing to be honest. It’s so hard that a lot of webtoon creators actually skip it. They go straight to drawing instead. They do a very rough draft of their story and go directly to the fun part of making a webtoon. Which is drawing. And that is why you get Anime, TV shows, or games that have crappy endings. Because the story was a second priority. It was just made along the way. However, it’s not practical to write a complete novel before you even start designing your characters. That is too extreme. I think it’s best to be in the middle where you have the story done. It’s complete but not set in stone. You can make changes along the way. But you already know how it will go and even know the ending. I am using a Microsoft Word template to do that. It works by asking me questions that will help form the story. I will have a complete story once I answer all the questions. I made this template by combining things I learned from using Storyweaver and Dramatica which are very old software. I used them in the past and I thought it was pretty cool that they helped you construct a solid story. You will eventually hit a writer’s block where you run out of ideas. It happens to everyone so don’t worry about it. What I did was I went to You Tube to do research. I searched for Japanese mythology or Japanese legends and watched a lot of videos. I also used a Japanese name generator for my characters. This saves me time of having to brainstorm them names. Unless a character needs to be named something specific. And here’s the first version of the synopsis. This is just the first version and can change over time. Let me know in the comments below what you think. Is it too cliche? And do you have any suggestions to make it better?
  9. Thank you. I did made webtoons before but I haven't finished one yet. I'm hoping this will be one I can commit to.
  10. Way back in 2002 I was playing a game called "Battle Realms". I liked that game so much that I would skip school for half a day just to play. It was that fun for me. I also liked the eastern Japan feudal period it was in. It looks so beautiful. The architecture, the forests, the way the characters looked. Me and my friends were also making manga at that time. We were amateurs and it was just a bunch of nerds that thought making our own manga would be pretty cool. And I needed a story. So I wrote one taking inspiration from Battle Realms. Thankfully, it was somewhat original and not just a blatant rip-off. Which is common if you're young and a fan of something. I also played "Throne of Darkness" and "Divine Divinity" during that period. So I guess I got some elements from those games as well. I like the story of Throne of Darkness even if it was a very simple one. And I like the seven samurais too. And of course the demons that you fought were awesome. Again, it was set in feudal Japan. For Divine Divinity I only took inspiration from the PDF file that came with the game. I think it was the prequel story or background story. But it wasn’t the game itself. It was still a good game though. We were actually able to make one chapter of this story. The first and last one. I called it “Terra Firma.” Which is a terrible name in hindsight. It’s 2021 now and I’m dusting the story off to bring it back. It’s basically an 18-year old story. Which is crazy. I also thought it would be a good idea to post this on Reddit to see how webtoon readers would feel about it. This takes a lot of guts because you never know what people will say. Not recommended for people with thin skin. It didn’t get much attention to be honest, only one person commented saying it sounds so cliche but would still read it. That’s actually a good sign because it means this story has potential. It sounds cliche for now but still interesting enough if done right. I also set up a poll for users who don’t want to comment but still want to help. You know, those silent lurkers. And it got three votes. Three not four because I voted on my own poll. That was the only way you can see the results early in Reddit. I know it sounds weird and I think Reddit should fix that. Two users found this story interesting and one user chose to pass on this one. So 66% of webtoon readers might be interested in a story like this. And that was good enough for me to give it a go. I’ve always wanted to finish this story. I never got the chance 18 years ago but I have the chance now. I feel like I owe it to the younger me to get it done. There you have it. That’s where I got my webtoon idea, from video games. From 18 years ago. Games are not a bad idea to get weapons ideas from. Let me know in the comments below, where do you get your ideas from?
  11. This is a saying in technology that basically means, poor input will always lead to poor output. That a computer only gives out what you put in. But I find this applies to humans too. Especially in terms of creativity. Creators are consumers, but not all consumers are creators. Before you make something you need ideas. So how do you get ideas? The easiest way is to consume media. If you want to make anime but have no ideas whatsoever, watch anime. If you want to make a game but have no ideas, play games. Eventually inspiration will strike and the ideas will come. Creators are fans too. We are just fans who love something so much we decided to make our own. While most fans are happy being consumers. And so the saying, garbage in garbage out comes to play. If you consume crappy stuff you will make crappy stuff. I am a big believer in not watching bad anime, playing bad games, watching bad movies, etc. As a creator it will make you a bad one. As a consumer it will lower your standards. That is why I started reading/playing Steins; Gate. Said to be the best visual novel of all time. And right away I already learned something. Compared to my visual novel (Super Detectives), Steins; Gate had more dialogue. It had deeper writing. Take note I never committed to a visual novel before. This will probably be the first and last visual novel I will consume. At least it was a very good one.
  12. To anyone who has made something or attempted to make something, you know this feeling too well. "Can I really do this? Who am I kidding? I don't know what I'm doing." I dabble in a lot of things. From web development, video editing, animation, web comics, making games, photography etc. But I never called myself a web developer, video editor, animator, artist, game developer, photographer. Because I never really felt I was one. I thought since I was a beginner and not as good as others, I shouldn't call myself a (insert title here). As it would be insulting to the REAL (insert title here). No matter what my accomplishments were, no matter how much experience I got, I was just a wannabe, a fake, an impostor. But then I realized.... you are what you do. Some people talk the talk and some walk the walk. Some think they are cool while some ARE cool. If you made a website, you are a web developer. If you made a web comic, you are an artist. If you took a photo, you are a photographer and so on. Many if not all veteran creatives went through this stage. Where they doubted themselves. But chose to keep going. And in the end, the feeling of being a wannabe disappeared. They became a real legitimate (insert title here). Have you ever felt impostor syndrome? How did you overcome it?
  13. That is crazy.... This is my first time hearing of such a thing. If you don't mind me asking, how is day to day life? How is it different to that of a normal person. And back to visual novels, yeah I really want to like them. I think they're something special and as you said they are their own unique medium. I do find it weird how JRPG also means visual novel. In Japan I think. Where we see JRPG as games like Final Fantasy. I guess you do play a role in a visual novel. So role-play. But every game lets you play a role. Hmmm.....
  14. Don't get me wrong, I WANT TO LIKE visual novels. And I've tried many times in the past to get into them. I pick one up and play or read it. Then I quit as I get bored. Then years pass and I try again. Only to end up bored again. Maybe you're playing crappy (or hentai) ones? My latest attempt into liking visual novels was Doki Doki Literature Club. So no. Doki Doki is hyped up for a reason. It's really good. I gave it a try. But I got bored and quit before reaching the good stuff. I kind of regret quitting early though. SPOILER WARNING.... Maybe because you don't like reading? Err.... I read a lot of books. Granted they are all non-fiction. The only fiction book I read was Harry Potter. So I don't mind the reading part. I think I can't get to liking visual novels is because they take a long time to get going. And I get it. They're trying to establish things. Setting up the world, the characters, and so on. But it takes way too long for me. And here is where it gets weird. I am currently making a visual novel. Like I said, I want to like them. So even if I can't get through one I still want to make one myself. I just hope mine doesn't make someone bored too.
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