The Sydney Morning Herald recently ran a story about the mobile phone novels (keitai shousetsu) taking Japan by storm. Some are calling this a fad driven by the popularity of texting. Others think it’s the future of fiction. Either way, the stats for these mobile novels are rather interesting:
• Half of Japan’s top ten selling works of fiction in the first six months of 2007 were composed on mobile phones. (Makes my thumbs hurt just thinking about it.) They sold an average of 400,000 copies each.
• They’re typically written by first-time authors using one-name pseudonyms.
• They’re tailored to an audience of young females.
• Scene and character development are apparently missing, but concise and very graphic details are revealed amidst emoticons.
One of these mobile phone novels, Koizora (Love Sky) by Mika, has sold over 1.2 million copies. And it was just made into a movie. If you’re having trouble working on that novel, just grab your cell phone and try banging it out one sentence at a time. You could be big in Japan.
On a similar note, have you seen an Amazon Kindle yet? They seem to be very blog- and Twitter-worthy because I see posts popping up every time someone spots one in a café or on the subway. Would love to hear from someone who is using it. Likes? Dislikes? We’re so curious. Hit us with your Kindle and keitai shousetsu comments down below.