Natsuhiko Kyogoku - Background - Book Design - Layout

Layout

The layout of Kyogoku's writing is arranged according to his own rules. A sentence never crosses over a page break. Moreover, every time a new version is published, Kyogoku always lays out the work again according to this rule. He explained the intention, "I made it possible for readers to stop reading whenever they want to. If one sentence steps over, readers who are weary of reading must turn over the page. I sense that is contemptible, because not interest to the story but physical factor force readers to read." Second, many kanji characters in his writing are invariably given kana characters alongside. Kyogoku can use DTP software perfectly, so he freely writes old-fashioned characters and ateji characters with the purpose of capturing old Japanese atmosphere in his novels. However, such characters are difficult even for Japanese people to read. Therefore, giving kana characters alongside kanji characters in his writing is essential for readers to be able to understand those characters' meaning. Third, sentences are marked out by entering null lines before and after them on purpose. That technique enables readers to perceive the curious blank where the important sentences are written. In these ways, Kyogoku always keeps readability in mind, and dedicates himself not only to sentences but also the layout. These qualities do not, however, carry over to the English translations of his books.

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