One Piece mangaka Eiichiro Oda’s hectic work schedule and commitment to the insanely popular Japanese manga was revealed recently. Has the news about crazy work hours of the mangaka added to or dispelled the prevalent rumors about the impending ending of the series?
In a One Piece Gold interview, former One Piece manga editor Naoki Kawashima spoke about the hectic work pace set and religiously maintained by Oda. He revealed Oda insisted that those who work on the manga should be prepared to “die for it.”
“The thing I remember most when I took over [as editor] was Oda telling me, ‘Die for One Piece,'”
As Kawashima soon realized, Oda meant every word he said, and to edit the manga, the former needed to be utterly committed and work as hard as Oda described,
“Because, in fact, Oda is that resolute in drawing the manga. At that time when he said those words to me, I was like, ‘woah, really?'”
Just how crazy is Oda’s work schedule? From Monday till Wednesday, Oda works on the story and its outline. During the gestation period, aspects like witty dialogues that Luffy and the Straw Hat pirates frequently spew against their numerous nemeses are developed. Essentially, the rough sketches and the dialogues help hammer out the flow of the manga that might stretch anywhere from a couple of weeks to a month, depending on the complexity.
Once the actual manga is tweaked and ready, Oda and his assistants begin the actual drawing. The finalized manga takes shape between Thursday and Saturday. Sunday is reserved for any color work that has been deemed necessary, like the images that adorn the manga covers. While the schedule may seem structured and balanced, Oda’s schedule is anything but.
According to Kotaku, Oda rarely sleeps and devotes his entire time to creating One Piece manga. Back in 2012, Kotaku had reported the mangaka barely sleeps for three hours, and four years later, the situation hasn’t changed even slightly, reported 2ch. According to the magazine, the manga artist still goes to bed at 2 a.m. and gets up at 5 a.m.
Recently, fans had used two separate interviews with Oda to calculate how soon One Piece would end. According to the calculations, fans speculated the popular Japanese manga would run for another seven to nine years before winding up.
Back when Oda began creating One Piece manga, he had planned to end it within five years. However, just before the Skypiea Arc, Oda confirmed he was merely at the halfway point. Interestingly, he kept on extending the timeframe for the increasingly popular manga in subsequent years, reported ANN. He never actually mentioned the actual time, but always spoke in terms of the story. Speculation aside, One Piece celebrated its 19th anniversary of “serialization” in July this year and celebrated its 20th anniversary on Weekly Shonen Jump last month.
Although One Piece appears to have several more years to go before ending, the series editor, Suguru Sugita, recently claimed he uncovered in a late-night episode of Japan’s Gold Rush show, an unnerving revelation about the actual run-time of the series. He claims the series has already burned through 70 to 80 percent of the storyline,
“Eiichiro Oda told me that the first part of the story, the part prior to the time-skip, was around halfway through. That was about 60 volumes, so maybe we’re at 70 percent? I don’t think it’s at 80 percent yet.”
Recent reconfirmation of Oda’s hectic work schedule could be an indicator about One Piece manga’s run-time. Since he hasn’t slowed down, the series may still be on track, and may have a lot of storyline still left to be covered. However, the schedule could also be an indicator that Oda may not have enough material to scale back his schedule, and has to develop the story along with the manga. Moreover, there have been quite a few “breaks,” recently. While that could explain the amazing twists as well as the prolonged battles that the One Piece mangaka keeps throwing at the fans, it could also mean there’s not enough material to maintain consistency.
[Featured Image by Eiichiro Oda/One Piece Manga]