AXYPB World opened in June 2010 with the eventual intent of exploring the unstated plot points in Fuguriya’s A Kiss For The Petals. The translation projects that I had worked on in the meantime eventually found a home there as well and, in short time, nearly dominated it. Many of the articles I planned for the site, such as character analyses, have still yet to advance past the planning stages due to the many unexpected opportunities my blog afforded me. This February, I pushed for a new name for the site. I wanted a name that is more marketable, as it were, and easier to memorize, among other reasons. As I have promoted Fuguriya’s products to the best of my ability since 2009 and made significant progress toward that end, I felt the time has come to make my blog’s presence known to them to a certain extent.
On 29 March, I sent a fourth letter to Reo-ppoi Radio, again with the help of Zero-O-Reo. When I heard of the Immigration Bureau’s introduction, I knew immediately that my site would be an excellent offering to them, but at the time, AXYPB World was in no presentable condition. In my first three letters, I made a point not to mention my blog and translation efforts. For this letter, I made a tremendous gamble by directly sharing Petals’ Garden with them–that is, after cleaning up my blog considerably starting in December 2011. I concluded the safest way to do this was to link the fanart index in a letter. I informed them of it under the pretense that highlighting what I found to be the most remarkable fanart is my way of supporting the fandom by encouraging others to contribute. I had considered the consequences of having Fuguriya discover the translation patches since my first letter, but I had always made it a point to encourage visitors to directly support Fuguriya in any way possible.
Since my first letter was read, my site stats indicated a slight increase in Japanese visitors, but until Zero-O-Reo commented on my second letter, I had not received any feedback whatsoever from them. Knowing that any of them could have informed Fuguriya about my site’s contents, I reasoned that any possible negative outcomes of my site highlighting the latest translation patch would have happened by now. Although I had no way of determining if this ever happened, I was too curious for any kind of response, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and share my site myself. The opportunity came after episode 28, when the video page included a link to the BlazBlue-style Reo-ppoi Radio video. As I had shared that on the index before it was featured, I used that as a gateway to write a letter to the Immigration Bureau.
Anzu Hana-san, ぽいちゃ.
This is Craig Donson once again.
As you know, I’m always trying to find new fans for your kingdom.
One of the ways I do this is by promoting fanart and encouraging others to show their talent in your name.
In episode 28, you showed everyone ぶるらじっぽい玲緒らじ, which I happened to have listed in my index of Sonohana fanart. (http://petalsgarden.axypb.net/2011/12/13/fanart-of-sono-hanabira-ni-kuchizuke-wo/)
You have some very talented fans, and a few of them live overseas and don’t even speak Japanese.
Please make an effort to reach out to them as well.
*Like the last time, Zero-O translated this into Japanese.
When I sent this letter, I considered three potential outcomes:
- Fuguriya opens the link to my site and approves, even if implicitly. The best possible outcome is that they share the same link on their own site, at which point I suspect I would have gotten an unprecedented spike in traffic.
- Fuguriya disapproves and possibly asks for a removal of some or all content. This was the most likely to me as I am still not aware of their stance of fan translations of their work. While we do have their approval to release textual translations of their light novels via Xenocross, Eden of Xeno has avoided making mention of my work with their visual novels and drama CDs.
- The link is ignored.
As this letter was not read in the four episodes that followed its submission and I did not receive any response, public or private, I can only assume that Fuguriya is either unable or unwilling to publicly acknowledge my fansite or possibly any others, likely due to the same reason that their site related to their main series is largely inaccessible to non-Japanese IPs (and even some of my contacts in Japan). I also have no way to determine if they ever visited my site.
The letter by the Marking Dude, which was sent on 24 April, was read on episode 31, released on 13 May. It had the same link to the fanart index in the footnote written by Zero-O-Reo, who was kind enough to give me a mention, but the reading stopped short of that link. It’s interesting to note that Anzu Hana had presumed that the English letter that opened the Immigration Bureau segment was written by me, and she only saw that wasn’t the case when she read the Japanese reading of the Marking Dude’s name. This is counter to my intention to publicize their works in America; that she thinks there is only one English speaker who has any awareness of the series indicates that I am not doing enough. Episode 32 was released on 26 May, so if my letter would have been read, the time for it has long passed.
The only definitive conclusion I can draw is that they are now aware of my blog. A letter focused solely on Petals’ Garden was discarded entirely, and a second letter that linked to it was read in part. For whatever reason, they either cannot or will not acknowledge it. If they have any issues with my site, they are unknown to me.
Making Fuguriya aware of my efforts through Petals’ Garden was, in a way, the ultimate goal of my correspondence, but I have been unable to until recently. Now that this has proven futile, the best chance to have a letter read seems to be to write for the regular fan mail section. However, I have little else to ask or converse with them until they announce a new product. (I have been advised that it’s in the best interest of both Fuguriya and Eden of Xeno to keep mum on Music Box of Memories.) Above all, I would like for a guest to read my letter in the hope that any of them could respond to my letter in English, but I may be asking for too much.