My Otaku Journey : Challenge Entry

Hi! This is my entry to the "How it all started" challenge by DragonRider11!

This is how I got introduced to Anime and Manga and friend that is mentioned in the story is Ryuchu on here. I didn't put her real name because I don't know if she would like it ^^

Some of the facts on here are made up because I don't remember all the details (like what I ate) but the general plot is true =3

Enjoy ^^


The bell rang, signaling the end of Study Hall.

I tore my eyes away from the pages of mindless math homework I was doing and stretched.

Lunch, I thought, Finally.

I packed away my things and joined the crowd, making my way to my locker in the Junior hallway. I switched the books in my arms with the ones I would need for my next classes and then took the stairs down to the cafeteria on the first floor. The slightly nauseating smell of greasy French fries mixed with greasy pizza hit my nose as I entered the large room.

This is why I bring my own lunch!

I spotted my friends over at our usual table and smiled. I had something to tell my friend, Ryuchu, something that would make her very happy.

“Hey guys!” I said, sitting down. We exchanged pleasantries and I opened my lunch bag.

Chicken pasta, a banana, and a cookie…Yum!

“So Ryu,” I started, using her nickname, “I have decided…” I paused for dramatic effect. She turned to look at me, curious.

“…to start reading manga!” As I expected, she broke out into a grin.

“Really?! That’s great! I know exactly what manga you should…” and on and on, talking with great excitement.

But wait…I should tell you how this all started.


3 weeks ago, same time, same cafeteria.

I was casually chatting with another friend and eating. Ryuchu was searching in her big bag. She finally found what she was looking for and held it up for us to see.

“Look! I got a new manga yesterday.” My other friends exclaimed with “Ooh that looks good…” or “I’ve read that before…”

“What’s a manga?” Having never seen a manga, I didn’t even know what she meant.

“Umm, well it’s a comic book but created in Japan. It has different art styles and everything. Oh yeah, and you also read backwards because they wanted to keep the original format when they translated from Japanese. Hey, you should start reading too!”

I was skeptical at this…I had stopped reading comic books in the seventh grade, I sure wasn’t going back.

Nonetheless, I asked to see the book and found the characters very strange with large sparkly eyes and triangular, grinning mouths. The large title on the front (or back??) cover said “Case Closed” and featured a tiny boy smoking a pipe.

That night I looked up Case Closed on Wikipedia and found that it was a manga and an anime. An anime, I discovered, was an animated show based on mangas.

Leaving my homework aside, I searched as much as I could on animes and mangas and their art styles and lists of titles.

I was intrigued.

Fast forwarding 3 weeks, I found myself embarking on a whole new world. The next day, I was handed four volumes of a manga by Ryuchu. The first manga I ever read? Fruits Basket.

I remember being very confused at first. Which panel do I read next? Did she say this first or this? I spent about 2 days just getting through the first volume. But I was definitely hooked. I finished the whole series and looked up the anime episodes.

I continued my otaku life into my final year of high school, devouring mangas and animes. Then I discovered something else!

Ryuchu led me onto a site called The Otaku. I was amazed. You mean I can draw and post my art on this site?! No way!

Since then I have developed my art style considerably, going from sketches and colored pencils to digital CG’s. And that brings us to the present, where I sit completing my Fan Words challenge entry.

If I could repeat this portion of life, would I just ignore the manga that Ryuchu showed me? Would I do my homework instead of researching the world of Otaku? Not for the whole world…no, not even for the world’s largest pocky!