As an editor specializing in translations of erotic manga from Japan, suffice it to say that I have a slightly interesting work environment.
If you walked into our office space, you would not notice anything out of the ordinary at first glance. We don’t have cubicles, but everyone has a desk in one very large room that takes up half of an entire floor in the middle of a high rise office building in the heart of Tokyo. (You can walk to the imperial palace from here, and the gorgeous Hotel New Otani is right down the street. I pass it every day walking here from the train station.)
My desk is right next to the other editors in the International Department, so every time we come across a funny translation or ridiculous plot point, you’ll hear us giggling in English. However, the rest of the office is run almost exclusively in Japanese. Even department meetings are held in Japanese, as most of our team is bilingual but several people do speak Japanese as a native language instead of English.
Even with over 80 Japanese staff members in the same room, it’s usually very quiet while everyone taps away at keyboards and works diligently at their desks. (Except for that one guy whose squeaky chair might show up in revenge nightmares featuring me with a baseball bat or rocket launcher. I haven’t decided how I want to destroy it yet.)
Yes. This is a peaceful, calm, and quite typical Japanese office. The dress code is a little informal compared to other offices, but most people just wear whatever is comfortable.
Nothing out of the ordinary here…
until you look at anyone’s screen.
The CEO of the company sits slightly behind me with a full view of what’s on my screen, which always makes me a little uncomfortable. Not because I’m procrastinating or doing something I’m not supposed to be. Rather, it’s because there are often images of two guys having amazingly messy sex on my screen.
Sometimes in full color!
Everywhere you look you will see something a little bit interesting as you walk through the office. Part-timers zooming in on erotic scenes to delete Japanese sound effects and speech in Photoshop… Content managers skimming through new volumes of manga to make sure all the files are in order… And there’s even an in-house publisher in the back of the room who makes 2-D animation versions of popular Japanese manga, too.
Once a week, everyone will get up and move to a giant conference room where we have a company-wide meeting, and each department will share news and reports of what happened over the last week. It never fails to amuse me when titles of the manga appear on the projector screen. We will often stifle giggles when someone has to read the title out loud. Inevitably there will be a stalker, a yakuza, or a classmate who just –ed your mom (also in full-color). But the most amusing thing of all is that most of the time everyone just sits through these meetings with a straight face. No reaction at all is the funniest reaction to me.
I love my job, but without fail, you will hear the phrase “What even is our life?” about once a week here in the International Department.
I hope you enjoy the manga we release. We do work hard to make sure it’s as sexy as possible. I’m looking forward to sharing more and more manga with you each week, so stay tuned, and thank you for reading!
Our new releases this week are on a whole new level, so please check them out and let me know what you liked!