Inada Shiho completed the Ghost Hunt manga prior to the reprint of Ono Fuyumi’s novel series. Magazine Da Vinci conducted this interview with both creators in commemoration of the last volume’s publication. This marks the last translation of Da Vinci’s 2010 special Ghost Hunt reprint feature. At the end of this post I added links to some additional scans and readers’ columns.
Inada Shiho x Ono Fuyumi
Congratulations! Celebrating the completion of the Ghost Hunt comic’s 12th volume.
The Ghost Hunt manga, which was started 6 years after the conclusion of the original work by Inada Shiho-san, finally published its last volume 12 years after the beginning of its serialization. As a substitute to the difficult-to-obtain original work, the comic edition became burdened as the figurehead of the series. In commemoration of its completion, a dialogue takes place between Ono Fuyumi-san and Inada Shiho-san who share a deep friendship in the workplace as well as in private. This pair are having a dialogue in a magazine for the very first time; what kind of behind-the-scenes stories will they reveal!?
Celebrating the completion of the Ghost Hunt Manga!
Ono: First of all, the last volume of the Ghost Hunt comic is on sale. Congratulations.
Inada: Thank you very much. I feel relieved that I could finish it without problems.
Ono: That’s great, isn’t it?
Inada: It really is great~. I didn’t even dream that I would reach the end. The readers who read it during its serialization in “Nakayoshi” must be in their twenties now.
Ono: There were various ups and downs, such as changing magazines midway the serialization. You really did a great job.
Inada: No, not at all. You really helped me out, Ono-san. When I was busy with storyboarding, you gave me advice, and when I was tired of drawing you called me on the phone (lol).
Ono: I only have the completed work, so it was easy for me. I knew that I would be at peace of mind if I entrusted this to Inada-san. Because your ability to read the novel is high. Otherwise, essential vignettes would be removed, and the trivial vignettes would remain.
Inada: You’re praising me (lol).
Ono: Actually, I saw that you made up a proper story out of the few lines from the novel in the storyboards that you finished, and I thought like “Whaat, so it was enough with just so few”.
Inada: Because I’m able to explain through drawings in the manga. But it’s also because of Ono-san’s ability to describe that I can accurately draw a picture. Ono-san’s writing style is very picturesque and easy to put on. It comes to my mind directly, no matter what the setting is. I want to insert various vignettes into it with only that much, but it will become tedious as a manga if I do that; I scrapped a considerable amount of scenes while in tears.
Ono: However, you definitely do not erase the characters who should have been in the scene, right. You draw everyone even thought it would be good to decrease the number of characters, because drawing them takes a great effort. You really don’t cut corners to the point of self-torture when it comes to that.
Inada: Because every character has fans, right? I think they would definitely feel disappointed if their favorite character wasn’t drawn in the place where they were supposed to be. That’s why I tried my best to do that.
Ono: I unconsciously forget some though (lol). Lin and Ayako represent those types. But that’s pitiful. So this time I wrote “Don’t forget Lin-san” on a tag on the occasion of the rewrite and stuck it in front of my monitor (lol). Please observe that I alluded to him even if he says only one word.
From the novel to the manga, and to the novel again
Inada: Just now we talked about the fact that the readers from the time of the magazine serialization are now already in their twenties. But there are also plenty of people among the comic edition readers who never read the original novels.
Ono: Even so, I’m fine with that though.
Inada: Still, you won’t know of Ghost Hunt’s appeal unless you read the novels too. If I remember correctly, many fantasy-like works about eradicating malignant spirits existed among horror light novels until Are There Really Lots of Evil Spirits!? came out. Those were enjoyable, but when I thought “I want to read something that’s a bit different”, I encountered your book. It felt like book’s world had its feet on the ground, I was smoothly able to understand it step by step as I read it.
For example, there have been several characters who are said to be “beautiful geniuses” like Naru. But very few works wrote about concrete things. It felt fresh on that point, because you precisely wrote how much of a genius Naru is. Besides, these days it’s not rare to have a protagonist with a personality like Naru, but back then there weren’t any others. I thought, this boy is thoroughly cold to the main girl! He’s not like a protagonist! How cool!
Ono: This is the first time I’ve seen you talk about Naru so enthusiastically. It’s almost as if you are a fan of Naru.
Inada: It’s not, as if. I was a fan of Naru.
Ono: Huh? You were?
Inada: I loved him very much.
Ono: I see, but you dislike drawing him.
Inada: Yes. Because he’s difficult (lol).
Ono: I really don’t like depicting “hero” characters. If the label which was called Teens Heart at that time, didn’t exist, a type like Naru wouldn’t have been born in the first place. However, I had moments when I thought “Ah, this Naru is cool” when I looked at Inada-san’s drawings. Then I go “…Tsk”. I felt awfully uneasy about being defeated. It was strangely annoying. Then I thought, now I seem like a narcissist (lol).
Inada: Thank you. At any rate, if you look at the whole series, the first volume of the original novel came out in 1989, and this year it’s 2010. In other words, it continued to be read in some kind of form throughout a period of 20 years.
Ono: Speaking of long-winded, that is long.
Inada: As expected, it’s because Ono-san’s story is interesting. That’s why readers follow you along for a long time like this. Actually, the story is interesting no matter how many times I read it.
Ono: You’re forcing it like that (lol).
Inada: But I have to praise you steadily. Because I am a big fan of the original work after all (lol). I’m looking forward to the supplemented horror scenes in this rewrite edition. The horror scenes written by Ono-san are truly scary. I had wanted to read it in full some more. I want the vignettes which weren’t depicted in the manga to be read as well, I feel like I’ve been somewhat relieved of a burden too.
Ono: The situation in which it was difficult to obtain the novels has lasted for a long time, so I’m happy if you could enjoy the rewrite edition this time.
Inada: Everyone, please become addicted like I did before!
From Kanagawa Prefecture. In 1994, she won the LaLa Manga Grand Prix Honorary Award with Camouflage and debuted. Besides gaining the support of the original novel fans with the Ghost Hunt comic edition, she also cultivated a new class of fans. Now, she is confirmed to draw the book covers of the reissued rewrite edition. Among her other masterpieces are the Genei Kitan (幻影奇譚) series
The translation of the “Ghost Hunt” Reprint Commemoration Special Feature is complete! For those interested, I uploaded some untranslated pages and posted two readers’ columns on tumblr.