Self-Made Lady Manga: Women Making Their Mark in the Manga Industry


self made lady mangaka

Manga, in simple terms, is comics or graphic novels originating from Japan. Over the years, manga has evolved to become a massive industry, with numerous genres and sub-genres, attracting millions of fans worldwide. One interesting aspect of the manga industry is the rise of self-made lady mangaka.

Mangaka is a Japanese term used for cartoonists, comic book creators, and graphic novelists. It is a highly competitive industry, and only a few breakout successes can make it to the top. The industry typically follows a hierarchical structure with established mangaka enjoying more fame, recognition, and higher earnings.

Female mangaka have been a part of the industry since its inception, but their numbers have surged in recent years. Self-made lady mangaka refers to women who have created their own works, without the support of established publishers, or any assistance from other influential creators. They often rely on digital platforms, such as social media or crowdfunding, to showcase their work and gain recognition.

female mangaka

The Popularity of Self-Made Lady Mangaka

The rise of self-made female mangaka can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, the manga industry is male-dominated, and female creators have struggled to break through and achieve success. However, technological advancements have provided a platform for female mangaka to showcase their work and reach a broader audience.

Moreover, many self-made lady mangaka explore themes that are not conventionally associated with manga. They integrate different elements from various genres, such as romance, science fiction, horror, and fantasy, which appeal to a wider audience. Their unique storytelling and diverse style have garnered a significant following, propelling them to achieve great success.

The self-made lady mangaka community is steadily growing, with several well-known artists reaching the pinnacle of the manga industry. For instance, Akiko Higashimura, the creator of Princess Jellyfish, was initially rejected by several publishers but went on to receive numerous awards and establish herself as a successful mangaka.

akiko higashimura

Another successful self-made lady mangaka is Yuki Okada, who gained recognition through social networking sites such as Twitter. Her manga “Star Collect” gained immense popularity and led to a publishing deal, despite being self-published initially.

Self-made lady mangaka’s success stories exemplify the potential of the manga industry and the power of digital media. They showcase how technology has bridged the gap between female creators and their audience, making it possible for them to carve out their place in the industry and gain equal recognition.


The manga industry’s growth has led to an increasing number of self-made lady mangaka, who create unique and compelling works that receive immense popularity. Their success exemplifies the unexplored potential of digital media and the changing landscape of the industry. With more and more women breaking through and making their mark, the manga industry is set for a creative resurgence and a bright future.

The Rise of Self-Made Lady Mangaka

Women Mangaka

The manga industry is traditionally male-dominated, but recent years have seen more women breaking down the barriers and creating successful manga series on their own. These self-made lady mangaka have shown that they can hold their own in the industry and produce captivating stories that resonate with readers of all genders.

Challenges Faced by Women in the Manga Industry

Women Mangaka

Despite the growing number of female mangaka, women still face several challenges in the industry. One of these challenges is the lack of opportunities for women to become assistants to established mangaka, which is a traditional path to becoming a successful creator. Women are often excluded from these positions, which can make it difficult for them to gain the necessary experience and connections to break into the industry.

Another challenge faced by women in the manga industry is the inherent sexism that exists in the industry. Women are often subjected to harassment and discrimination, and their work is sometimes dismissed or undervalued because of their gender. Women who create romance manga, in particular, are often dismissed as producing frivolous or overly emotional stories.

Despite these challenges, many women have persevered and carved out successful careers in manga. In fact, some of the most popular and critically acclaimed manga series of the past decade have been created by women.

Success Stories of Self-Made Lady Mangaka

Women Mangaka

One of the most successful self-made lady mangaka is Rumiko Takahashi, who is known for her hit series such as Inuyasha and Ranma 1/2. Her work has been serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday and has sold over 200 million copies worldwide, making her one of the most successful mangaka of all time. Takahashi’s success has inspired countless women to pursue careers in manga and has proven that women can be just as successful as men in the industry.

Another successful self-made lady mangaka is Akiko Higashimura, who rose to fame with her series Princess Jellyfish. Her work focuses on complex female characters and has been praised for its sharp wit and humor. Higashimura has won numerous awards for her work, including the Kodansha Manga Award and the Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize, and has been an inspiration to countless female creators who want to tell stories that center on women’s experiences.

Other notable self-made lady mangaka include CLAMP, a group of four women who have created a variety of popular manga series such as Cardcaptor Sakura and xxxHolic; Io Sakisaka, who is known for her romantic dramas such as Strobe Edge and Blue Spring Ride; and Yana Toboso, who is the creator of the popular series Black Butler.

These women have shown that with hard work and talent, it is possible to succeed in the manga industry, even in the face of sexism and discrimination.


Women Mangaka

Self-made lady mangaka continue to make strides in the manga industry, proving that women can create compelling stories that capture the hearts and minds of readers. While challenges still exist for women in the industry, the success of these women serves as a reminder that barriers can be broken down if one is determined and talented.

Examples of Successful Self-Made Lady Mangaka

successful self-made lady mangaka

Manga is a form of Japanese comics that have become increasingly popular worldwide. In the world of manga, there are many talented and successful self-made lady mangaka who have captured the hearts of readers with their captivating stories and unique artistic styles. Here are some of the most well-known and successful self-made lady mangaka.

Rumiko Takahashi

Rumiko Takahashi

Rumiko Takahashi was born on October 10, 1957. She is one of the most well-known mangaka in Japan and around the world. Takahashi made her debut in 1978 with her manga series “Urusei Yatsura,” and later went on to create other successful series such as “Ranma 1/2,” “Inuyasha,” and “Maison Ikkoku.” She has won numerous awards and has been recognized for her contributions to the manga industry.



CLAMP is a group of four female mangaka: Nanase Ohkawa, Mokona, Tsubaki Nekoi, and Satsuki Igarashi. They made their debut in 1989 with their manga series “RG Veda” and later went on to create other successful series such as “Cardcaptor Sakura,” “Chobits,” and “Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle.” CLAMP has won numerous awards and has been recognized for their unique storytelling style and artistic abilities.

Akiko Higashimura

Akiko Higashimura

Akiko Higashimura was born on August 29, 1975. She made her debut in 2002 with her manga series “Kuragehime” and later went on to create other successful series such as “Tokyo Tarareba Girls” and “Princess Jellyfish.” Higashimura is known for her unique and humorous storytelling style and artistic abilities. She has won numerous awards and has been recognized as one of the most influential women in the manga industry.

These self-made lady mangaka have inspired many readers with their captivating stories and unique artistic styles. They have paved the way for future generations of female creators and have shown that with hard work and dedication, anything is possible.

The Obstacles Faced by Self-Made Lady Mangaka

Self-Made Lady Mangaka

Being a self-made lady mangaka in the industry is no easy feat, as they face various obstacles that their male counterparts may not encounter. One of the most significant hurdles they face is sexism. Despite progress towards gender equality, there is still a long way to go in the male-dominated manga industry. Female mangaka often face criticism and discrimination for their gender, as many still view it as a ‘man’s world.’

As a result, some may face harassment in the form of negative comments, belittling their work, and even sexual harassment. Such treatment can take a toll on their self-esteem, increasing stress levels and leaving them feeling undervalued and hopeless in the male-dominated industry.

Another obstacle that self-made lady mangaka face is discrimination, not only for their gender but also for their work. Publishers may be more likely to choose male artists for certain genres or themes, especially those perceived to be more popular with male readers. Female artists may find it more difficult to make a name for themselves in such genres, limiting their creative freedom.

The pressure to create content that appeals to a predominantly male audience is another challenge they face, as most of Manga’s readership is male. In some genres like ‘shonen,’ which targets young boys, writers may hesitate to take on female artists as they may not relate to the target audience. The pressure to produce more male-oriented content can also lead them to compromise their artistic vision and creativity, which can lead to work that is more generic and lacks the female perspective.

Despite these obstacles, many self-made lady mangaka have persisted, paving the way for future generations of female artists. They have broken barriers and created incredible works that have inspired and touched readers worldwide, proving that women can be just as successful in the Manga industry as men.

More Representation for Women in the Manga Industry

Women in Manga Industry

While the manga industry in Japan has long been dominated by men, there has been a growing interest in promoting diversity and inclusiveness in recent years. The push for more representation for women in the industry has opened up opportunities for self-made lady mangaka to showcase their talent and creativity.

The manga industry has recognized that women have a significant impact on the market, both as readers and creators. Women readers form a significant portion of the manga market, with many titles aimed explicitly at them. The industry has also recognized that women creators bring a unique perspective to the table. Self-made lady mangaka have distinct styles that can broaden the genre and its audience.

One of the ways the industry is supporting self-made lady mangaka is by offering specialized training and mentorship programs. These programs enable women to hone their craft and prepare them to compete in a male-dominated industry.

Breaking the Glass Ceiling

Breaking the Glass Ceiling

Traditionally, the manga industry has been difficult for self-made lady mangaka to break into. Women have faced gender discrimination, unfair contracts, and bullying. However, more self-made lady mangaka are successfully gaining recognition and breaking those glass ceilings.

Tools like the internet have also made it more accessible for self-made lady mangaka to publish their work and gain exposure in the industry. Platforms like Pixiv, Twitter, and Instagram provide an avenue for self-made lady mangaka to share their work and reach a broad audience. The rise of webcomics and webtoons, in addition to physical publications, has also created a new avenue for self-made lady mangaka to showcase their work.

The Rise of Female Empowerment and Feminism

Rise of Feminism in Manga

A noticeable shift has happened in the audience’s preferences. They are no longer content with the status quo. Readers are actively seeking stories that not only are well-written but empower female characters instead of sexualizing them. This rise has provided opportunities for self-made lady mangaka to take these stories and expand them.

The manga industry is known for its ability to address and tackle societal issues, and the rise of female empowerment and feminism has now found its place in the genre. Self-made lady mangaka are taking the lead in this movement, expanding the genre’s limits and addressing gender inequality thoughtfully. This approach opens an avenue for the genre to advocate and promote social inclusion and diversity without compromising the quality of the story.

Diverse Stories and Characters

Diverse Stories and Characters in Manga

With the rise of a more diverse pool of creators come more diverse stories that audiences can connect to. The manga industry has seen a noticeable shift not only in the creation of female-dominated titles but also in addressing specific social and cultural issues.

Self-made lady mangaka have the ability to create stories that not only represent their lived experiences but also expand the horizons of the manga genre. Female-dominant titles like “Our Dreams At Dusk”, “Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-Kun,” and “Kase-san and Morning Glories” tackle complex issues such as sexuality, real-life relationships, and socially taboo topics, defying both stereotypes and conventional norms.

Self-made lady mangaka’s works now span beyond traditional romance/fantasy genres, tackling sensitive subjects, and reimagining complex and layered characters.

The Future Looks Brighter

Future of Women in Manga

The manga industry is slowly but surely changing to become more inclusive and welcoming to self-made lady mangaka. The prospects for these talented creators are getting brighter, and we can expect even more diverse stories and characters in the future.

The industry’s growing recognition of the self-made lady mangaka’s talent and potential reflects a desire to break down gender barriers and allow more voices to be heard. Fans can expect more titles from these artists that go beyond the usual tropes and expand the manga genre’s horizons.

Self-made lady mangaka and the growing hunger for more diverse stories and characters point to a bright future of not only bridging gender inequality gaps but also promoting the creation of high-quality content that can inspire and empower readers everywhere. The future of the manga industry and self-made lady mangaka is indeed bright.


manga artist

Self-made lady mangaka have made undeniable contributions to the manga industry, challenging gender stereotypes and creating stories that resonate with readers around the world. These women have shown that with passion, hard work, and creativity, anyone can make a name for themselves in this competitive industry.

One of the most important impacts of self-made lady mangaka is their ability to showcase a greater range of narratives and perspectives in manga. By bringing their unique voices and experiences to their stories, these artists can connect with readers from diverse backgrounds and provide representation for underrepresented groups. This diversity not only makes manga more inclusive but also makes it more relatable to a wider audience.

Self-made lady mangaka also play a vital role in inspiring aspiring manga artists, especially young women. By seeing women succeed in a male-dominated industry, these artists are encouraged to pursue their dreams and overcome any obstacles they may face. Through their own struggles, self-made lady mangaka prove that anything is possible with hard work, determination, and talent.

Additionally, self-made lady mangaka have a remarkable ability to capture emotions and stories that resonate with readers on a deep level. Whether it’s exploring complex themes like love, loss, and identity, or crafting memorable characters that readers can’t help but root for, these artists have a gift for storytelling that keeps readers coming back for more.

In conclusion, self-made lady mangaka play a crucial role in the manga industry. They inspire, innovate, and bring a diverse range of narratives to manga that would otherwise be absent. As the industry continues to grow and evolve, it’s important to recognize and celebrate the contributions of these talented artists, and to support and encourage the next generation of self-made lady mangaka.