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Sep. 24th, 2008

01:29 pm - *sigh*

A couple weeks ago, the hard disk crashed on my home computer (it was a Mac G4 that I got used in 2001, so it definitely lived a full life!). Things are too tight right now to do anything about another computer, and next month, when the household will start to have two monthly paychecks coming in, every spare yen of both of 'em will be needed to pay for another six months' storage for our stuff in the U.S.

At this point, it looks like the soonest chance to get back online from home will be mid-November. Until then, online access and email-checking for avalonjones and I will pretty much be during weekday lunch hours at work.

Losing the computer derailed a flock of plans, including finishing Saiyuki Reload Gunstock this month. Will aim for the end of the year, and hope for the best. Thanks for your patience...!

Sep. 17th, 2008

01:46 pm - FREE TO GOOD HOME: Pair of Saiyuki Kagekiden tickets for 9/21 noon show!

After seeing it last Monday, avalonjones and I had planned to see the Saiyuki musical a second time on September 21 (this Sunday!), but now it turns out we won't be able to go after all.

"Saiyuki Kagekiden"--the musical--is being held at the Tennouzu Galaxy Theater, about a three-minute walk from the Rinkai Tennouzu Isle train station or one-minute walk from the Tokyo Monorail Tennouzu station. Each of its showings has something different planned (the Monday noon show we saw had a Gojyo/Dokugakuji "talk show" afterwards, yeah baby!); the Sept. 21 noon show, which is the next-to-last performance, is planned to have a special poster giveaway and signing by part of the cast.

There's not enough time to sell our pair of tickets (S-class first-floor seats in row M--these buggers were 6800 yen each) online, and I really hate for them to go to waste, so am willing to give them for free to someone who will use them to go see the show (not sell them!).

I'll be in Tokyo that day, so could hand-deliver the tickets Sunday morning at some meeting place in the Tokyo area.

If you can use them, please feel free to send me a message. My hard disk crashed on the home computer so am currently not able to get online from home or do anything else computer-related there, but am able to get on LJ weekdays during lunch.


Jun. 8th, 2008

09:55 pm - Two Things

THING #1: A Kazuya Minekura Signing That It's Still Possible To Get In On!

To commemorate the July 25 publication of "Salty Dog V," Kazuya Minekura will have a book signing at Animate Ikebukuro on August 3.

From May 28 to June 30, if you pre-pay for upcoming Minekura art book "Salty Dog V" at any Animate branch in Japan (except the shop in Tokushima, for some reason), you can get a special form to use to enter a drawing for a seiriken ticket to the signing. (You'll need to supply your own round-trip postcard to enter the drawing.)

To reserve the book at Animate, grab a bar-coded ticket from the pocket on the shop's "Salty Dog V" wall display (at the Akihabara shop, for example, there was a "Salty Dog V" wall display with ticket pocket on both the second and third floors), and take it to the cash register. After you pay the book's 2400-yen price and your Animate card has been scanned to connect your name and address with the reservation (if you don't have an Animate card, you'll need to fill out a reservation slip with at least your name and phone number), you'll be given the special form, which is stamped with the name and address of the Animate shop where you made the purchase. (If the staff person doesn't offer you the special form, be sure to ask for the seiriken; it actually isn't a seiriken, just the form to use to enter the drawing to try to get a seiriken, but that will remind them to give it to you.)

After you get the special form, fill it out and glue it to the half of the round-trip postcard that you'll send to the entry address listed on the form (it's also listed in the July 2008 ZERO-SUM; that page also appeared as Page 18 in the last RFB). The return half of your round-trip postcard should have your address, with the reverse side left blank. (The special form includes instructions on how to prepare your round-trip postcard.) All postcards must be received by July 7.

If your postcard is a winner, the second half of your round-trip postcard will be returned, printed as your seiriken ticket. If you lose, the second half of your round-trip postcard will be returned printed with a message from Kazuya Minekura (all will have an identical message, ZERO-SUM points out). Win or lose, the second half of your round-trip postcard will hit the mail to you starting July 14. Best of luck to everyone who enters!

THING #2: 'Journey to the REST' to Rest

The news is about to go up on Journey To The REST, but wanted to explain here first...

Things haven't improved here after life got turned upside-down in March; just been week after week of scraping bottom. And taking care of two elderly pets has chopped down my online time; the computer is in a structure at the top of a steep staircase, up on top of the store attached to the house, and blind, deaf Koji has come so close to getting hurt up here so many times, have got to keep him downstairs. Downstairs is almost entirely tatami-floored, and both pets keep having accidents (my fault; between work on weekdays and class in Tokyo on Sunday, I'm not there for most of the day six days a week, so they've gotten used to just going whenever they feel the need). So I've been spending most of my home time writing in notebooks at the kotatsu in the largest tatami room downstairs, keeping the animals in there with almost every inch of the floor papered with pet sheets. We all sack out together in there, too.

Getting through the day by day by day without my partner, and having to use my online time so carefully, it's been weighing on me just how much of my Saiyuki fan activity is ultimately just duplication of effort.

The JTTR news reporting has been embarrassingly dicey the past several months. I can only poke around online a couple evenings a week--and my timing has been crappy. News that didn't happen today is probably already up somewhere else, and reporting old news is a frustrating duplication of effort--so, lately, I just haven't done it. Which makes holes in the site's news chronology. Which brings its own brand of frustration.

And then there's RFB. Fun as the broadcasts are, TD'ing it takes time, and at the very least scans will be on LJ's saiyuki_manga within the month anyway.

My dad, who passed away at an early age, once told me, "Be sure to spend your time on something worth your time." Saiyuki is certainly that--but it's also got far more folks covering it now than when Journey To The REST started in October 2001.

And life is just plain too short for duplication of effort.

So, after some long thought, have ended most of my fan projects, and put what's left on hiatus until September (my partner should be here and settled in by then, and life will look a lot better). Everything Saiyuki-related is over as of today, except Journey To The REST; that site will be on hiatus until September, when Saiyuki Reload Gunstock will finish at long last. And that will probably be The End (unless I can think of something unique to do on the site--but again, the world of today is a much different place than 2001).

Saiyuki fans have plenty of other places to turn, so I can step away with my bucketful of Lake Saiyuki without leaving a hole in the water. And JTTR will be back in September for the conclusion of Saiyuki Reload Gunstock, complete with prizes (the latest addition to the pile is the commercial DVD of Axle's "Saiyuki" stage play!). Closer to the time to go back live again, I'll be e-mailing entrants and asking them for their top choices from a list of all the prizes, so that the winners and their chosen loot can be announced during Gunstock itself.

Until then, I'll be using the time to pursue some freelance work and try to improve my speaking ability.

Words can't begin to express how deeply grateful I am for all the time people put into reading and participating on Journey To The REST (and RFB), and the support that folks were kind enough to give. Thank you all so much--I really appreciate it! Maybe I'll get to see some of you at the Minekura signing in August (if I'm lucky enough to draw in...) or the "Saiyuki Kagekiden: Go to the West" musical in September--here's hoping! Otherwise, will be back with JTTR in September. Thank you so much again, and 'til next, please take care.

Mar. 10th, 2008

02:42 pm - Third-Floor Windows All Steamed Up?

Of course--there's a Saiyuki fan event going on up there!Collapse )

Jan. 24th, 2008

12:39 am - Peechurs!

Better late than never...Happy New Year!

Almost verbatim from Journey to the REST, but with larger images:

1/23/2008: WARD BEGINS ANEW! Although the February 2008 issue of Monthly Comic ZERO-SUM came out December 28 without a Saiyuki RELOAD chapter (but with a bound-in New Year's card featuring Sanzo and Hakkai [that's it above] and a write-in premium offer for a RELOAD wallet featuring art of our four doing the cowboy thang, pictured just below!), fireworks followed soon after with the January 16 rebirth of sister publication WARD!

Formerly a quarterly, WARD has become a bimonthly publication now--and relaunched with this issue labelled "Vol. 001," complete with a Saiyuki Gaiden cover. The issue also came packaged with a beautiful reproduction genga of Goku by Minekura-sensei, printed on a 15cm x 17.5cm (about 6 x 6 7/8 inches) shikishi board...that's it below! Some booksellers also promoted the issue by including an oversize reproduction of the issue's textless cover art, printed on heavy stock, with each purchase. And best of all, the issue had a 12-page chapter of Saiyuki Gaiden! (The table of contents mistakenly listed it as "Saiyuki," swiftly prompting an apology on publisher Ichijinsha's web site.)

The March issue of ZERO-SUM, coming out on January 28, is slated to have a Saiyuki RELOAD chapter and Valentine's Day card featuring Gojyo and Goku. After that, next month will see the release of the concluding third part of the "Saiyuki RELOAD - Burial-" OVA, on February 22. The year is off to a strong Saiyuki start!

* * * * *

I picked up two spares of the WARD issue--still wrapped with their reproduction genga boards--and have added them, two heavy-stock reproductions of the issue's textless cover art, and a 2008 Saiyuki RELOAD calendar to the sizeable prize pile for the Saiyuki RELOAD Gunstock contest. The rest of the prizes recently resurfaced while unpacking from the move; it's just been so brutal cold up here in the house's computer room, it's hard to crawl out from the kotatsu downstairs to get anything done! But it's high time the darn thing got finished, and I hope to have it wrapped up, contact winners, and get folks' loot on its way before leaving for a trip back home at the end of February. Thanks, as always, for your patience... Off to bed!

Current Mood: determineddetermined

Nov. 17th, 2007

09:33 pm - 50 Percent More "Gaiden" A Year? It Could Happen...!

Blurrrg. The company I work for has just moved from its rental warehouse home of nearly 10 years to a mondo new building in the next prefecture north. The last two weeks are a blur of packing and tearing down and setting up and unpacking and inventorying. But we finally got done yesterday--just in time for 'way more enjoyable things, like the new WARD...which had some exciting news! (BTW, the new WARD was supposed to be the Autumn 2007 issue, but came out labelled "Winter 2008." My local bookstore, which usually gets a quantity of 3, was told there wasn't an Autumn 2007 issue and didn't receive the Winter 2008 issue; another area bookstore that has carried it in the past also didn't have it. Fortunately, Animate had a healthy stack [just had to go halfway to Tokyo to get to the nearest Animate!]. Here's hoping that any confusion over the issue's date change won't cause a problem for any other bookstores or importers!)

Anyway...verbatim from Journey To The REST:

11/16/2007: 'BURIAL' OVA DELAY, BUT MUCH MORE 'GAIDEN' ON THE WAY! The release of the concluding third part of the "Saiyuki RELOAD - Burial-" OVA has been delayed from next month to February 22, Minekura-sensei announced yesterday in her Nitro diary. But, it turns out, helping make the wait easier will be a double dose of Saiyuki Gaiden! The Winter 2008 issue of WARD, where Saiyuki Gaiden is serialized, came out today with the announcement that the former quarterly will be published every other month in 2008. WARD's first bimonthly issue will reach Japanese bookstores on January 16.

Off to tend something that's cooking...!

Aug. 27th, 2007

01:54 pm - Just in case...

The Summer WARD came out back on August 16, so its alternate cover for "Saiyuki Gaiden" Vol. 3 has probably already been posted somewhere--but since my scanner just turned up, what the heck, will post it just in case. The images above are the front and back with the text removed. For the front and back with the text, scanned at 125 percent:

Front of "Saiyuki Gaiden" Vol. 3 alternate cover

Back of "Saiyuki Gaiden" Vol. 3 alternate cover

Should be back online for good from the new house on September 6, when the construction will be done to hook the place up for cable and high-speed Internet. The next day, my partner will arrive at long last! (We've lived apart the last seven years while I've been in Japan...way, wayyyy too long!) I've been unpacking every night, trying to get the house ready before then. Still have a high heap of boxes to get through, but can't help but hope that time flies until the deadline--can't wait for September 7!

"Saiyuki Gaiden" is planned to return in the Autumn WARD on November 16. "Saiyuki RELOAD" is not expected to be in the issue of Monthly Comic ZERO-SUM that comes out tomorrow, though.

Unpacking awaits... Hope this finds all well!

Jul. 31st, 2007

08:11 am - Hello, I Must Be Going...

Hey, all-

First of all, a huge WELCOME BACK!! to luxetumbra! Am so relieved that you're back and all right!

veronicacode got a scoop on Minekura-sensei! If you haven't already, be sure to check it out. (Thanks very much to befanini for the heads-up!)

FWIW, the September issue of Monthly Comic Zero-Sum came out last Saturday. Its "Saiyuki RELOAD"-related fun bits were few and far between, but Sanzo finished 4th in a reader vote to determine what Zero-Sum character "might be an otaku" (he's a mayonnaise otaku, one voter asserted), some special goods will be offered at Ichijinsha's booth at the August 17-19 Comiket, and the issue came with a free Saiyuki RELOAD clear file featuring the front-cover art from the Vol. 7 tankoubon.

Also last Saturday, I lucked into the Studio Backgammon doujinshi "Taiyou No Tou" ("Tower of the Sun"), from February 1994! Minekura-sensei, who was 18 at the time, drew that Gojyo picture above for it. Didn't know this book existed! (Although am pretty sure have seen that Gojyo picture somewhere before...maybe it was one of her old doujinshi pages that got reprinted, about postage stamp-size, in "Saiyuubito"? Mine is packed so can't check...) There are some eye-opening antiquities in "Taiyou No Tou"--about Wild Adapter as well as Saiyuki. Will be glad to share 'em after I move, if this book isn't already out and around.

Will be offline to move starting tomorrow...and there's still a ton of packing to do, yikes...! Dunno yet when I'll be able to get back online, but hope to be back soon.

See you next month!

Jul. 13th, 2007

01:46 am - Heavy sigh...

Verbatim from Journey To The REST:

7/12/2007: 'RELOAD' ON HIATUS AFTER ALL With her entry to the hospital looming on July 14 for her surgery on July 17, Minekura-sensei tried her best to finish the second half of Saiyuki RELOAD side story "Mezase! Tenkaichi" in time to make the ZERO-SUM issue coming out July 28...but it unfortunately wasn't possible to do after all, she's just announced in her Nitro diary. Saiyuki RELOAD is planned to return to ZERO-SUM in the November 2007 issue that comes out September 28...although some Japanese fans say they aren't expecting to see the next chapter until the New Year.

In the meantime, we can look forward to the Summer WARD (August 16) with its alternate cover for Saiyuki Gaiden tankoubon Vol. 3, and Vol. 3 itself, slated for release July 25.

+ + + + +

Quickie note on the personal front... Found a big ol' former store/mondo-tatami-roomed living quarters place (three connected buildings, each a different size and color...looks kinda like a house orgy from outside!) partway between where I live now and the further-north city my job will move to later this year. The place is over 200 square meters, has a slew of neat old decorative architectural touches, but is in need of fixing up (some photos are here--shot a lot of fiddly details for my partner to see, since she'll be moving in too later this year)...annndo, maybe because they figure there's not much more damage to be caused, they're willing to accept pets! It's also in an area that has cable, unlike here in inaka-ville...and it'll be bye-bye to crummy dial-up Internet connection, too! Hopped on it with both feet, and have been packing and Packing and PACKING, figuring on moving the first week of August. Gonna be a crazy time!

Gotta get back to the boxes... Let's make July 17 Worldwide Best Hopes For Minekura Day!

Jun. 27th, 2007

09:41 pm - All the news that fits

First of all, mondo thanks to dwellerverse and the_breakroom for gifting this LJ with their remaining paid time! Will try to put it to good use. Thanks again!!

This is probably old news, but today was the first chance I had to check Minekura-sensei's diary since last week, so just saw the news... Quickly bashed out for Journey To The REST:

6/27/2007: LAST 'RELOAD' FOR A WHILE IS DELAYED FOR A WHILE! In her Nitro diary, Kazuya Minekura announced she wasn't able to finish the second half of "Mezase! Tenkaichi," her "Dragon Ball"-esque Saiyuki RELOAD two-part side story, in time to appear in this month's issue of Monthly Comic ZERO-SUM that comes out tomorrow. She hopes to finish it for next month's ZERO-SUM, but can't promise; her time to enter the hospital is coming up fast.

The absence of Saiyuki Gaiden from the Summer WARD has already been announced, but Minekura-sensei had some good news about that issue: it will come with an alternate cover for Vol. 3 of the Saiyuki Gaiden tankoubon book coming out in Japan on July 25!

Although there won't be a ZERO-SUM-related broadcast of radiofreebanri, I hear there will be an audio-centric (!) broadcast instead that with luck will go up in two parts, on Friday and Saturday.

The company I work for will move to a different city later this year, so I've been searching for a new place to live -- ideally, a much larger place that allows animals. Would like to have the move over and done before September, so it wouldn't interfere with the craziness of the company moving, but don't yet know if that will be possible. More news as I know it.

Hope this finds all well!

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