AnNaNoWriMo: Celebrate National Novel Writing Month with Anime!

Mikazuki and haru reading a book
The only thing better than a good book is one you wrote!

NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, and it rolls around every November to encourage would-be authors to give it their all and try to write a whole novel in just one month. That includes story brainstorming, out-lining, development, drafting, and re-writing, all in just 30 days! There are live meeting-ups to swap story ideas with other writers that are experiencing your pain. There are virtual meet-ups so other writers can virtually share in your pain. There are words of inspiration from published authors, there are write-a-thons, and special writing prompts. There are videos, and blogs, and websites just for strategies and encouragement to help you on your writing quest. And, if that isn’t enough to get you stretching your typing muscles and getting ready to write the next literary masterpiece, don’t worry, there are plenty of anime characters that have done all the work for you! So just sit back, and relax this NaNoWriMo season, and enjoy the antics and lively work of authors in anime.

girl writing with quill
Quill written novel, writing at epic level!

My Roommate is a Cat

mikazuki and haru
an author and his cat

My Roommate is a Cat is an adorable story about healing grief, making connections, and building your own community. In this slice-of-life anime the main character is an author named Subaru Mikazuki. Mikazuki has always been shy and withdrawn, but when his parents die, the young author is left in even deeper isolation. For months after their death, he rarely left his house, and feared crowds. Not surprisingly considering how much stress he was experiencing, Mikazuki was also dealing with a bad case of writer’s block. Though his earlier works were fairly popular, no matter what he did, Mikazuki just couldn’t come up with any new ideas for his next book. And then a small gray cat (Haru) stumbled into his life, and Mikazuki found that not only did he start feeling better, his writer’s block came to an end too. As the main character slowly started learning how to be a good pet parent, he was forced to make connections with other people, like getting to know the people at the pet store and the vet, and a community started forming around him.

haru
It takes a great cat to inspire a great writer!

Tactics

Kantaro Ichinomiya
Nothing’s more stylish than an author!

An older anime, Tactics has the same old world folksy feel of Natsume Yujincho, but with a Taisho twist. It’s a fun blend of the ancient meeting the modern and it has some really traditional Japanese folktales along with a little bit of Western cultural occult stuff too. Well, it does take place in the Taisho era. The main character of Tactics is Kantaro Ichinomiya, a young “folklorist” author that researches folk lore and writes about it. Kantaro has been able to see monsters and ghosts since he was a child, which makes the research of folk lore much easier for him. Considering that being able to see ghosts and such is a little weird to the average person, Kantaro has been treated pretty badly by the humans around him. So instead of trying to fit in, he just made friends with the monsters that he can see. With the help of his yokai friends, like Yoko the fox yokai, Kantaro travels Japan solving mysterious events, saving yokai, and being harassed by his publishing agent because he’s so busy with helping yokai that Kantaro often misses his publishing deadlines.

yoko
Writing folklore with a little help from his friends!

Fruits Basket

Shigure Sohma
Hmm, how can I mess with my relatives again?

Shigure from the anime Fruits Basket (the original, not the recent remake) might not be a main character, but he certainly has a big personality. Playful, mildly lecherous, and always looking out for his younger family members, he is often the catalyst that starts important events in motion. Maybe it’s the romance writer in him, but it’s often Shigure that’s gently nudging relationships between family members and friends closer together. His writing career might also be the reason he has such an inventive imagination and is such a fan of spurring on story progressing conflict and dramatic endings between his family members. If Shigure was going to write the story of the Sohma family, it’s almost a guarantee that it would be a love story and it would probably go a lot like the anime!

Bungo Stray Dogs

bungo stray dogs cast
author’s action pose!

Bungo Stray Dogs is a unique anime in which authors (or rather characters that have the same name as famous authors) have super powers and use them to prevent, solve, or in some cases commit crimes. The main character is Atsushi Nakajima named after the famous Japanese writer by the same name. The real life Atsushi was known for his novel “Moon over the Mountain” which is about a legend of a man-eating tiger. The Atsushi in Bungo Stray Dogs is a young man that can actually turn into a tiger (though he doesn’t remember it after he transforms back).

Atsushi and his tiger form
an author and his cat?

In fact, all the author inspired characters have powers that relate to what the real life authors wrote about. In the anime, Atsushi gets involved with Osamu Dazai after Atsushi pulls him out of the river and saves Dazai from drowning. It ends up that the Dazai in the anime was trying to commit suicide (something the real life Dazai was known for) and didn’t want Atsushi’s help, but Dazai still manages to solve Atsushi’s tiger problem and then recruits the young were-tiger into the Armed Detective Agency. This agency works to protect Yokohama from super powered organized crime and solve extreme crimes.

bungo stray dogs cast with glowing book
To be a writer takes intense power!

Do you have any favorite anime that feature a fearless author? Leave a comment below!

The anime exclamation of the week is: Chiisai! meaning Tiny!

Check out my Podcast!

I’m currently watching:

  • Zombie Loan
  • Over Lord
  • Case Closed
  • Gegege No Kitaro
  • Night Beyond the Tricornered Window
  • Visual Prison
  • Hanasakeru Seishonen
  • Backflip
  • Mars Red
  • Takt Op. Destiny
  • The Great Jahy will Not Be Defeated!
  • Sakugan
  • Yashahime: Princess half-demon
  • Hells
  • Cardfight Vanguard Overdress
  • Drug Store in Another World
  • Bungo Stray Dogs
  • Tokyo Revengers
  • The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
  • Inari Kon Kon
  • Mieruko-chan
  • Click Link
  • Banished from the Hero’s Party
  • Toilet Bound Hanako-kun
  • Obey Me!
  • Taisho Otome Fairy Tale

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