LN translation is in a similar place fansubbing was in before Crunchyroll and other forms of legal streaming came along. There aren’t too many light novels officially translated into English, and many series are out of print and discontinued. As a fan translator, I do my part in making Japanese LNs available in English, but I know that what I’m doing is actually illegal. But in many ways, it really can’t be helped, at least for now.
The good news is that the situation is changing, little by little. With more LNs being adapted into anime than ever before, people are taking notice of LNs (for better and for worse). Yen Press has recently licensed the guaranteed cash cow known as Sword Art Online, with other popular LNs like Kagerou Daze on the way. And with the shift from print books to Ebooks, LNs have a better chance of finding exposure at a cheaper price. The digital revolution has opened up possibilities for every literary subgenre imaginable, so it’s not as if there is no market for LNs, even if they will remain niche for the foreseeable future.
Beyond translated LNs, there’s another type of English light novel, one that’s been eking out a humble living in the dark corners of the internet up until now: original English light novels, written by English-speaking anime fans. It’s this kind of LN I’ll be focusing on today.
Just a friendly reminder that UR WAIFU IS SHIT.
It is commonly assumed by anime fans that the Harem Protagonist, the audience stand-in for socially inept Japanese males, has shit taste in women. Close analysis of any given harem anime reveals that a vastly superior Best Girl is ordinarily present within the harem framework. A question that presents itself is why Harem Protagonists do not simply bang the Best Girl when she clearly displays strong amorous desire for his dick. This systematic study of harem anime shows that Harem Protagonists are genetically encoded with bias towards girls with severe IQ deficit.