I have written a work of Shinto-based fiction: Tamao. It’s an urban fantasy, and the blurb is as follows:
Akiko Tanahata liked her normal life in Japan, with a clerical job and a serious boyfriend. Shinto shrines were just places to visit at New Year. But that all changed when she sought shelter from a sudden downpour, and found herself in an impossible space, confronted by a great serpent. Now the serpent will not leave her alone, and she can see the pollution that is slowly corrupting Kawasaki. As her normal life is taken apart by forces beyond her control, Akiko must learn about the kami, and take control of her own future if she is to save her city.
The Kindle version is now available for pre-order on Amazon, and it will be released on November 23rd. If you pre-order, you will apparently get the book delivered to you automatically on that day.
There will also be a paperback version, which should be available at the same time — I’m waiting for the proofs. Despite the claim on Amazon’s page at the moment that the printed version is 826 pages, it’s actually only 576. That does mean that there won’t be a hardcover version, because Amazon can only get up to 550 pages for hardbacks. The paperback will be $24.99, because the printing costs are quite high. (With print-on-demand, there are no reductions for large print runs.) I do not think it is possible to make the paperback available for pre-order; if I am right about that, I will activate it on the 23rd, so it will probably be available shortly after the Kindle version.
Pre-orders are apparently good for the algorithm on Amazon, so if you are interested, I would appreciate it.
The release date is a national holiday in Japan, “Thanks for People Overworking Themselves Day”. (That is not the official translation…) However, it is on the day that is now the day for the niinamësai, the ceremony in which the new grains are offered to the kami with thanks for the products of that year. This is one of the oldest recorded ceremonies in Shinto, and was mentioned in the Hitachi Fudoki. The original date was the second day of the rabbit in the eleventh month of the luni-solar calendar, and so it happened near the winter solstice. When the Meiji government changed to the Gregorian calendar in 1873, it was moved to the eleventh month of that, November. In the first year, it was performed on the second day of the rabbit, but after that it was kept on the 23rd, the day that happened to be the second day of the rabbit in November in 1873. I chose this date as a significant date on which to release a Shinto-related book.
It’s not strictly part of Mimusubi, because it is fiction, but I hope that people who are interested in Mimusubi might also be interested in it.