A Mangaka is a person who creates manga. Japanese, from manga + ka ‘specialist’.
Hiro Mashima is well known in the world of manga and anime, most predominantly for the manga and anime Fairy Tail. Mashima is an extremely talented artist and writer, and has also created many other popular manga such as Rave Master. Even though his artwork is amazing I think his success as a mangaka is because he is an astounding story teller. The worlds and characters he creates are very strong. The main characters in each manga may look similar to one another at times, but their personalities are completely different. When Mashima creates his characters, he develops their backstory from their childhood to adulthood and even beyond! This amount of knowledge allows him to create story arcs that may initially seem out of character for a main protagonist, making it intriguing yet slightly confusing for the reader. However, the endings of these story arcs are usually resolved with a past truth about the protagonist being revealed. Mashima also creates well thought out and planned locations. They are often planned out to the last detail, as the characters may return to that specific area in future volumes of the manga.
I have been a big fan of Hiro Mashima’s since I started watching the anime of Fairy Tail. I have since gone back to the beginning and read all of the Fairy Tail manga, as well as Rave Master and currently Edens Zero. I love his art, character design, the locations but what keeps me reading and returning to his work is the story. Each week I eagerly await the new chapter of Edens Zero and soon I will be waiting for his newest creation Heroes.
If you would like to read/watch more of Hiro Mashima’s work then I recommend:
Rave Master (Weekly Shōnen Magazine, 1999–2005, 35 volumes) Manga rated T (teen), Anime rated PG to 12
Fairy Tail (Weekly Shōnen Magazine, 2006–2017, 63 volumes) Manga rated T (teen), Anime rated PG to 12
Edens Zero (Weekly Shōnen Magazine, 2018–present) Manga rated OT (older teen)
Mashima is also working on a mini-series for Weekly Shōnen Magazine’s 60th anniversary called Heroes.
Heroes will unite the worlds of Rave, Fairy Tail, and Edens Zero as one, so it is expected to be an awesome crossover series.
Heroes (Weekly Shōnen Magazine, October 2019)