The first volume of Reki Kawahara’s hit light novel series Sword Art Online launched in Japan in April of 2009. That means it’s officially been a solid decade, and the author and publisher KADOKAWA are celebrating with the launch of a 10th anniversary project website, complete with a new illustration by light novel illustrator abec, pictured above.
The 44-year-old Kawahara shared a message to go along with the new site, emphasizing his plan to continue writing novels for 15 and 20 years. Here’s his full message, via Crunchyroll:
“I have repeatedly stated, ‘My goal is to survive for 10 years!’ But as I finally reach the 10th anniversary, I feel a great sense of accomplishment and a little sense of loss. Remembering the time when I serialized the early version of Sword Art Online on my website, the journey so far has never been easy. There were times when I thought ‘I can’t write anymore,” because I could not stand impatience and pressure in myself. However, thanks to many people who have cheered me, and the readers, viewers, and players who have supported my works, I have managed to work as a writer for ten years. I have not found my next goal yet, but I intend to continue writing novels steadily for 15, and 20 years. I appreciate your continued support.”
Kawahara’s first novel, Accel World, secured ASCII Media Works’ 15th Dengeki Novel Prize in 2008. His 10th anniversary memorial project will run until March 31, 2020, so stay tuned for future plans.
Source: KADOKAWA press release via Crunchyroll