Organized as a dictionary of industry-specific terms, it captures everything from the production flow to industry jargon. This reference should be your first stop if there’s something you don’t understand.
The title states that this list is for “anime writers,” but my main objective is to present 11 books that will give you a quick grasp of production techniques and the history of so-called commercial anime (i.e. anime that gets major distribution via TV and movie theaters). I picked these publications as an introduction to the basics, and there are also many must-read pieces about specific titles that you can find in magazines and mook publications.
- Sachiko Kamimura, Animeeshon no kiso chishiki daihyakka (Encyclopedia of Basic Knowledge about Animation), Graphicsha, 2009
- Ango Sakaguchi, Sho Aikawa, UN-GO Aikawa Sho kyakuhonshu: Sakaguchi Ango gen an Meiji kaika Ango torimonocho (UN-GO Sho Aikawa Screenplay Collection: Ango Sakaguchi Story, Meiji Kaika Ango Torimonocho), Media Pal, 2012
- Isao Takahata, ‘Horusu’ no eizou hyougen (The Visual Expression of ‘Horus’), Tokuma Shoten, 1983
- Yoshiyuki Tomino, Eizou no gensoku (Principles of Image), Kinema Junposha, 2011
- Mamoru Oshii, METHODS – Oshii Mamoru ‘Patlabor 2’ enshutsu nooto (METHODS by Mamoru Oshii - Production Notes on Patlabor 2), Kadokawa Shoten, 1994
- Kenichi Konishi, Kiyotaka Oshiyama, Hagane no renkin jutsushi mirosu no seinaru hoshi gengashuu (Full Metal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos Key Animation Book), Square Enix, 2012
- Tomonori Kogawa, Animeeshon sakuga hou – dessan, kuukan paasu no kihon to jitugi (Animation Methodology – The Basics and Practices of Drawing and Spatial Paths), Sougeisha, 2007
- Hiromasa Oguro, Studio Ghibli, Hikari to yami Ogura Hiromasa gashuu (Ghibli THE ART series) (Light and Darkness Hiromasa Ogura Art Collection (Ghibli THE ART Series), Tokuma Shoten, 2004
- Works Corporation Shoseki Henshubu (Works Corporation Book Editorial Department), Anime CG no genba (Anime CG Production Site), Works Corporation, 2014
- Animage Henshubu (Animage Editorial Department) (ed.), TV anime 25 nen shi (25 Years of TV Anime History), Tokuma Shoten, 1988
- Yasushi Watanabe, Katsunori Yamaguchi, Nihon animeeshon eigashi (The History of Japanese Animation), Yubunsha, 1978