Hiromu Arakawa (荒川 弘 Arakawa Hiromu?) is the manga artist of Arslan Senki, a Japanese fantasy novel series written by Yoshiki Tanaka
She often portrays herself as a bespectacled cow. Her given name is Hiromi (弘美?), the first character being written identically to her male pen name, Hiromu.
Born on May 8, 1973 in Tokachi, Hokkaidō, Japan, Arakawa was born and raised on a dairy farm with three elder sisters and a younger brother. Arakawa thought about being a manga artist "since [she] was little" and during her school years, she would often draw on textbooks. After graduating high school, she took oil painting classes once a month for seven years while working on her family's farm. During this time, she also created dōjinshi manga with her friends and drew yonkoma for a magazine.
Arakawa moved to Tokyo in the summer of 1999, and started her career in the manga industry as an assistant to Hiroyuki Etō, author of Mahōjin Guru Guru. Her own career began with the publication of Stray Dog in Square Enix's Monthly Shōnen Gangan in 1999. Stray Dog won the ninth 21st Century "Shōnen Gangan" Award. She published one chapter ofShanghai Yōmakikai in Monthly Shōnen Gangan in 2000. In July 2001, Arakawa published the first chapter of Fullmetal Alchemist in Monthly Shōnen Gangan. The series spanned 108 chapters, with the last one published in July 2010, and the series was collected in twenty-seven volumes. When the studio Bones adapted it into an anime series, Arakawa assisted them in its early development. However, she was not involved in the making of the script, so the anime had a different ending from the manga, which she developed further. The series won the 49th Shogakukan Manga Award in theshōnen category in 2004. When the second anime adaptation was reaching its ending, Arakawa showed director Yasuhiro Irie her plans for the manga's ending, making both end in near dates.
She gave birth to a son in 2007 but did not take a maternity leave. In a February 12, 2014 interview, Arakawa mentioned that her third child had been born a few days earlier. Other than this she has chosen to keep her personal life private.
She is currently living in Tokyo and has published three more works, Raiden 18, Sōten no Kōmori (also known as Bat in Blue Sky), and Hero Tales. Arakawa has collaborated with the creation of Hero Tales with Studio Flag under the name of Huang Jin Zhou. In the anime adaptation of the series, Arakawa was responsible for the character designs. She has also drawn the cover from the Japanese edition of the novel The Demon's Lexicon authored by Sarah Rees Brennan.
In April 2011, Arakawa began a new series called Silver Spoon in Shogakukan's Weekly Shōnen Sunday. Rather than writing another fantasy series like Fullmetal Alchemist, Arakawa wanted to challenge herself by trying a more realistic story with Silver Spoon. It quickly rose among Shogakukan's best-selling titles and an anime series by A-1 Pictures began airing in July 2013. Also in July 2013 she began her manga adaptation of Yoshiki Tanaka's The Heroic Legend of Arslan series of novels in Kodansha's Bessatsu Shōnen Magazine.
- Stray Dog (1999)
- Shanghai Yōmakikai (上海妖魔鬼怪?, lit. "Ghost Demons of Shanghai") (2000)
- Fullmetal Alchemist (鋼の錬金術師 Hagane no Renkinjutsushi?, lit. "Alchemist of Steel") (2001–2010)
- Raiden 18 (2005)
- Sōten no Kōmori (蒼天の蝙蝠?, lit. "A Bat In Blue Sky") (2006)
- Hero Tales (獣神演武 Jūshin Enbu?) (2006–2010)
- Noble Farmer (百姓貴族 Hyakushō Kizoku?) (2006)
- Silver Spoon (銀の匙 Gin no Saji?) (2011–)
- The Heroic Legend of Arslan (アルスラーン戦記 Arusurān Senki?) (2013–)
- 1999: 9th 21st Century Enix Award for Stray Dog
- 2003: 49th Shogakukan Manga Award, Shōnen category for Fullmetal Alchemist
- 2011: 15th Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize, "New Artist Prize" category.
- 2011: 42nd Seiun Award, "Best Science Fiction Comic" category for Fullmetal Alchemist
- 2012: 5th Manga Taishō Award for Silver Spoon
- 2012: 58th Shogakukan Manga Award, Shōnen category for Silver Spoon
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