Curious if there’s any other folks here who dabble in the genre, either as readers/watchers or writers of their own magical girl fiction (original or fanfic).
Some of my first forays into writing were magical girl stories! I still have one character from my childhood who I’d love to revive in a new story, but I have no idea how I’d even go about writing something in that style. Seems more suited for art, but I don’t draw anymore.
Recently finished the first arc of Sailor Moon Crystal… so nostalgic.
I’ve actually never written a traditional magical girl story myself but I am a fan of the genre. I have really fond memories and a lot of nostalgia for old magical girl anime and manga series and I still like to watch some of it to this day. I do have to agree with @yuuen that I would find it hard to come up with ways how to write in that style. However maybe I’ll get an idea at some point and will dabble a bit deeper into that genre myself, who knows!
The conventions of the genre are more suited to a visual cartoonish medium, true. With my main magical-girl WiP, I’ve gone with a more “grounded” approach to the tropes. They transform into their magical selves, but it’s not a flashy light-show of cinematic angles and poses. They have magical attacks, but don’t have names they shout out for every attack. It’s not heavy on the fights; the focus is on the characters and themes, the heart of the genre.
(Admittedly, it’s been challenging trying to write the fight scenes. The most “fair” odds in any scene are 6-2 on the heroines’ side, and making a 6-1 final confrontation has been something I’m still trying to figure out.)
My project is a magical girl series, and I do have the elaborate transformations and the over-the-top frilly costumes, because without them, is it really magical girl? The girls do say their activation phrases out loud, but they only have to when they’re learning the spells. Once they’ve mastered them, it’s just for fun.
I’ve got three fights and a lot of training in my novel. Since my main character is just learning her job, she mostly has to think her way out of problems, and she leans heavily on her more experienced teammates. She’ll face longer odds, including being outnumbered, in the next book.
This is essentially a light-hearted genre, despite some of the darker takes on it in the past decade, so having a sense of humor about the trademark elements, or having the characters have a sense of humor about them, has worked well.
I was inspired by a lot of things for my Sisterlands Sequence, including Sailor Moon, but the Magical Girl aspect doesn’t come into play for a few books because the Sceptres can be used without the transformations, but when it becomes clear that alone isn’t going to be enough (Book 4), the ones who have Sceptres are given the required knowledge to transform into their Pseudo-Starmage forms, complete with individual Sceptre-element-themed costumes. The Sceptres are much more powerful in this state, and the characters’ native magic is also more powerful. There are differences to usual Magical Girl series, though, chief among them being that four of the siblings who get this in the first part of the Sequence are boys. Another set of siblings is set to get similar transformations in the middle section, and the Rings in the third part will have a similar effect as well, but I’ve not planned for what form that will take yet. I suppose it’ll come to me closer to the time of writing.
My first adventures in writing were actually Sailor Moon fanfiction, so I guess I dabbled a bit in the genre. Haven’t really done much with it since. Although, I guess my character Lydia in Dream World Chronicles is inspired loosely from this. As a Dream Catcher, she does transform her look and have special powers that only she can use (and only available to her in The Dream World).
Ah, the magical girl genre takes me back to the good old days! My current WIP used to be a magical girl kind of story, without quite so many frills, but it’s since pulled away from that again and is actually more or less about a non-magical girl in a world of magic. But I’m sure I’ll write some MG fluff at some point in the sequels just for fun.