The dark side of manga: Mangaka says low pay and rejection made him leave company and want to commit suicide
The anime industry has now become infamous for its low wages for animators, toxic environment, animators committing suicide, and incredibly hard deadlines. However, the manga industry itself is also the same. One mangaka, whose pen name is “Canned Beef”, is known for his adult-oriented work. He recently left his company, and in a series of tweets, said that he wants to quit being a mangaka and is even contemplating suicide.
Canned Beef then went on to say that he only receives 80,000 yen a month, which is below the basic standard of living in Tokyo. He also tweeted that his editorial department won’t even pay him for 200 pages worth of rejected material. They also have unreasonable demands when it comes to Comiket as well.
In some instances, mangaka can work with other manga magazines within the same company. Because his pay of 7,000 yen per page ain’t enough to cover his living expenses, he asked his company if he can do the same and also work for the company’s other manga magazines. Of course, the company rejected this, stating he’s not popular enough. The mangaka has made a name for himself in doujinshi, or fan-made works. However, it seems that his efforts weren’t enough to make the editor change his mind.
The editor even said that they’re thankful his doujinshi work is making Canned Beef more famous, but then added that he should “stop being a doujin punk”. His company’s constant rejection of his works then led him on a tirade, even posting one of those rejected works via twitter:
Finally, the mangaka stated that running away was his only choice, but also noted that “there’s no paradise to runaway to”. He says working with the company made him want to run away.
This is often the case for many mangaka who start out with doujinshi. While they find success in the doujin scene, they find that when they finally do professional work, companies would just stifle their creativity. Even for successful manga, companies would make them change their planned storylines, often putting off a planned ending to make manga longer and profit more from it.
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Source: Canned Beef’s Twitter account