Just want to add a few thoughts on the upcoming Gendaito book but first of all, a big THANK YOU to all who provided me with material via the separate email@example.com address, facebook, the NMB, and everywhere else. Please understand that I will wait with replying and asking specific questions until the actual writing job starts. As mentioned earlier, I have gathered about 1,100 smiths and aim is to record and publish once and for all as many smiths as possible. I have also mentioned that there are quite many where no pictures or oshigata are available but which will be published too, or course, and this most likely collected and in a separate section. Apart from that, I am facing certain page limits, 800 pages to be precise, but it doesn’t make much sense to approach this limit anyway as I have learned that anything that big is prone to fall apart or get “wobbly.” The “sound barrier” is somewhere around 600~650 pages, which is within easy reach at more than 1,000 smiths. And I am not going to make it two volumes. As picture quality is also an issue, this will definitely not be a coffee-table book with details of hamon or jigane and an ouvre of each smiths works (much as I would like).
To sum it up: This book will not be a “Jack of all trades, master of none.” Top priority is as indicated recording the CV’s of as many smiths as possible, accompanied by pictures/oshigata of signatures so that the book also work as a reference for mei comparisons. To leave the focus on the smiths, I also don’t want to toss off a half-hearted chapter on the history of gendaitô, but what I want to do is to follow up something like a Nihon Gendaitô Shi, so to speak continuing my Nihon Shinto Shi and Nihon Shinshinto Shi, that contains all that information like production sites, programs, contests, etc.
That should do it for tonight and thanks for your attention.