First, some backstory. Back in 2012, some of you may remember there was an initiative to unite the passion of an international community of Key fans to communicate our love to Key themselves. Fans from all over the world were invited to contribute by submitting fanart and letters to Key, which were to be compiled into a book and delivered to Key themselves. It was called the Key15th Anniversary Letter Project, and a lot of our own community participated. Unfortunately, due to various circumstances, the project ended in failure and the few people remaining working on it had no choice but to give up on it ever happening.
Flash forward to 2016. After all this time as passed, the situation has changed quite a bit. Key is no longer the final senpai the international fandom wishes would notice them; we’ve already been noticed. VisualArt’s have embraced the international fandom with loving generosity, localising game after game on Steam to substantial success, and even announcing a future title to be released on Steam in English before anywhere else. Around this time, Kazamatsuri was contacted with the request that we breathe new life into the Key15th project, so that the efforts of those who contributed to it wouldn’t be left in vain. The world is a different place now, so it wouldn’t feel right to simply finish Key15th as it was. (And we’re long past the 15th anniversary by now!) The answer we reached, was a rebirth. A new project to leap forward from the efforts of its predecessor and become something new and exciting.
We’re calling it The K.E.Y. ~ Key Enthusiast Yearbook. An English-language fanbook by Key fans, for Key fans. Our hope is to once again ignite the creative passions of the international Key fandom and consolidate them into this awesome book we’ll be distributing both as a free PDF and sold as a bound book online. By doing this, we hope to communicate to VisualArt’s and Key just how thankful we are that they’ve finally decided to release their titles overseas, and show just how much these stories mean to us.
The K.E.Y. will be separated into chapters, each focusing on one of Key’s titles. With enough art we hope to have a page spread for every single route from every game (and not-game) Key has authored. The book will showcase fanart and other creative work produced by the community, accompanied by written content reflecting on just what these stories mean to us. It’s more than just an artbook, we want to create a book that really reflects the love and passion behind the Key fandom, and gives those fans a voice, even the ones that aren’t artistically inclined.
We’ll be collecting all sorts of fanworks the community has produced over the years and curate our collections for inclusion in the book. We’re accepting fanart, cosplay and craft photography, links to external media like music and videos, and also written content by fans sharing what Key’s stories mean to them. And even if you don’t want to write a paragraph, just write a little handwritten note, scan it and send it in. We’re hoping to fill out autograph board-like pages with lots of little handwritten notes, and we’d love for you to contribute to them!
Oh, did we mention that? We’re not limiting this to new creations. If you have some old Key fanart or creative work lying around that you’d like to put to use in The K.E.Y., then by all means share it with us! This is being produced to commemorate all the dedication of the international Key fandom up to this day, so we’re not going to hold back. The more submissions the merrier! In keeping with our goal of reviving the Key 15th project, we’re going to try our best to contact everybody who submitted something for the Key 15th Project to see whether they’d like to incorporate their submission into The K.E.Y., or produce something new for it. It’s been a long wait, but we hope to finally see that passion be realised into something.
But don’t think you’ll be doing this for nothing either. We are in the process of preparing some exciting prizes to award to our contributors for their efforts on helping make this book a reality. We may be sitting on a certain autographed portrait valued at 50,000 yen, that we might like to give away if we’re feeling generous~ More details on these in the future.
The project is currently accepting contributions.
To join the project, first you need to sign up by using this form here.
Then once your profile is set up, you can submit content using this form here! Please fill out a new form for each piece of content you wish to contribute.
We’re also accepting letters to VisualArt’s/Key here.
We’re also rewarding members with $10 reward tickets for submitting art there is a bounty for, or for referring someone to the project who does so. To find out more, check here.
Let’s all work together, as an international community of Key fans, to create the biggest and best Key fanbook in the world! A true crystallisation of our love and passion for Key. Spread the word to as many Key fans as you can! #TheKey
We’re currently working very hard on the format and design of the book, and things are looking really good. We hope to release an update on our progress very soon!