Most people don’t know the shear amount of time and effort it takes in to making a manga. The process itself stretches many hours and can leave the writer in the hospital or worse yet dead. But on the other hand, each issue printed is very meaningful to the readers.
Tite Kubo, Bleach’s creator, recently finished Bleach after a 15 year run. However, on the 10th year he began to get health problems. In the beginning the doctors would say it’s just a cold, which would pass within a day or two. However, his condition would often get worse which would cause him to be bedwritten for a weeks time.
After some time Kubo felt like a failure, who was letting the fans down. He wondered if he should continue the series or end it in a way that was slightly different from what he had planned.
One day, Kubo got a letter, with no name or address for the sender:
The letter was from a sick boy. His medicine had little to no effect on him which caused him to now be hospitalized. He learned that his disease was incurable. He was told he had only 18 months to live.
The boy decided to live out his days the way he wanted to by reading manga. He eventually came across Bleach. For the first time since he was hospitalized he thought about tomorrow, waiting patiently for the next issue of Bleach to come out. It was as if Bleach gave him a reason to live and look forward to things.
The boy had instructed that the letter be sent after his death, so he was already dead when Kubo received the letter.
The letter ended with these words:
Kubo-sensei, I have one final request. Please draw BLEACH the way you want to draw it, right until its conclusion. That’s what I want to read.”
Kubo took this to heart. From that point on he knew he had to finish the series and stay true to it.
Kubo has asked people to help him find this kid so he can pay his respects and thank him.
— 久保帯人 (@tite_official) November 17, 2016