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What is light novel?

A light novel (ライトノベル raito noberu) is a style of Japanese novel primarily targeting middle and high school students (young adult demographic).

A lots of popular animation are from light novel.

Popular anime ‘Nisemonogatari’, ‘Shakugan no Shana’, ‘Nyaruko: Crawling With Love’, are all adapted from light novels.


Shakugan no Shana

Nyaruko: Crawling With Love

The marketing scale of light novels in Japan

At present, light novels hold over 20% of the paperback book market. The light novels market was estimated at USD $26961.60 in 2011, therefore it is a growing market with much more potential.

Light novels hold 23.5% of paperback book sales share in 2011.
Approximately 4.3 books are equal to 1 light novel in terms of sales.

How many people want to be light novel writers in Japan?

Light novel writers are defined as people who publish more than one light novel a year. Currently, light novel writers number around 600 people, and around 400 people continue their work into next year.

Around 180 people leave the market, and around 200 people come in.

On average, the light novel writer community increases by 20 people per year!

Number of light novels which are written in one year

[Dengeki Bunko] Application 6078 / Prized 8 / Prize Rate 0.13%
[MF] Application 2214 / Prized 11 / Prize Rate 0.49%
[GA] Application 1156 / Prized 8 / Prize Rate 0.69%
[Kodansha] Application 1109 / Prized 5 / Prize Rate 0.45%
[Famitsu] Application 729 / Prized 6 / Prize Rate 0.82%
[Kono Light Novel ga Sugoi!] Application 421 / Prized 6 / Prize Rate 1.42%

11,707 light novels are written in one year…

Legendary light novel writer “Ishin Nishio”

Can you believe it…?
The total page number of Kubishime Romanticist (paperback book) is 578!

Paperback book: 578 pages

At one point in his life, he normally wrote 200 pages of a novel in one day.

When he was contributing to the market, his fastest pace was 200 pages per one day.

Possible story

Main character is junior or high school student.

Online game.

Middle-school 2nd Year Syndrome

Chuunibyou (中二病), or “Middle-school 2nd Year Syndrome”, is a colloquial and rather derisive term in Japan which describes a person at the age of fourteen would either act like a know-it-all adult, or thinks they have special powers no one else has. Some would even go as far as being obnoxious, arrogant, and often look down on adults or older people. This way of thinking or acting is mostly seen in teenagers during adolescence, however there are people who still act like this even after reaching adulthood.

Herbivore men

Main character is strongest.

3 top selling light novels in Japan

No1:Slayers(Twenty million sold)
No2:Legend of the Galactic Heroes(Thirteen million sold)
No3:A Certain Magical Index(Twelve million sold)

Legend of the Galactic Heroes

A Certain Magical Index

Now, you might be knowledgeable about light novel culture in Japan! Why don’t you try reading and enjoy it more? 🙂

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