Watching Shueisha’s digital presence develop over these past few years has been interesting to say the least. Starting in 2018 with the launch of Jump Rookie, the publisher has set about systematically destroying any barriers that may lay between it and future hits in the digital age. That process is now coming to the world of shoujo manga, as the manuscript submission and perusal website ‘Manga Meets’ was announced for an August 26 launch.
In many ways, the Manga Meets website mirrors that of Jump Rookie. Users are invited to make an account and upload manuscripts to the site, with works from other users also going to be available for perusal. The only difference is that a reply or feedback from an editor is “100% guaranteed,” along with submissions to any ongoing contest or competition.
Uploading to Manga Meets means that you are eligible for serialization in any one of Shueisha’s female-oriented shoujo magazines, the most noteworthy of which are Ribbon and Margaret. But the company is also including all of the digital versions of those magazines and their various apps, showing that a very wide net indeed is being cast to capture the next generation of shoujo talent.
Let me be the first to admit that I haven’t the foggiest as to the current state of shoujo manga. But, if it is anything like the current state of Weekly Shonen Jump, then it is no surprise that Shueisha is going in so hard with this new Manga Meets website. A comment from the company said the following:
“As the way we read manga and the places we get our information from diversify, it becomes harder and harder for those wanting to become creators to find a platform that meets their needs and complies with supply and demand. Is there not a place where creators can meet editors, where talent can be uncovered, and where contacts can be made? We think that this site could become that place, giving birth to wonderful works and placing them in Shueisha magazines, thus going beyond the current limits of shoujo and josei manga.”
There are apparently no limits on genre or experience required to use the Manga Meets platform, so head over to the official website if you are interested in learning more. There are also two contests running towards the end of August, with one of them being predicated on drawing art to an original story by Switch Girl!! author Natsumi Aida.