Mangapedia: Weekly Shonen Jump

Welcome to the Mangapedia! This recurring monthly feature aims to illuminate the world of Japanese comics for aficionados and new readers alike. Look here every month for cool insights and informative articles about manga!

Of the various magazines that serialize manga in Japan, Weekly Shonen Jump (WSJ) stands out as the most iconic, and it has followed an interesting process in the creation of its manga; a process which is still followed to this day.

Just like the Western world of comics, creators are aspiring artists and storytellers who dream of seeing their work enjoyed by fans. A manga editor in Japan is responsible for discovering these talented and ambitious creators and guiding them, from providing feedback on their illustrative talents to helping them to develop their stories.

There are three ways in which WSJ editors discover the young talent that they will work with: Through contests held by the staff of WSJ; through walk-in meetings with the editors; or by finding new talents working as assistants to established mangaka already being published in WSJ.

After planning out an ongoing story and putting together concept sketches with an editor, a creator will then draw three full-length chapters of a prospective manga series. Once those three chapters are created, they are then judged by a “Serialization Committee”.

Every issue of Weekly Shonen Jump includes a survey postcard in which readers select their three favorite series from a given issue. Based on the results of these surveys, the manga in the magazine will continue or end, and has created several long-running manga series.

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