Chinese kung fu and fantasy web fiction becomes hot in US
Wuxiaworld.com. [Photo/screen shot of wuxiaworld.com]
Recently a two-year-old website, Wuxiaworld.com, surprised many Chinese people by its great popularity in the US.
The website is a platform for sharing English versions of Chinese kung fu and fantasy online novels translated by Chinese martial arts lovers.
According to data from Alexa, the website ranked 1,525 in the world and 986 in the US, with more than 3 million daily page views, 241,211 daily unique visitors, and 2,475,861 monthly unique visitors (in the light of IFABC Global Web Standards, a unique user is "an IP address plus a further identifier.)
With a black Chinese dragon blazing across the top of its homepage, Wuxiaworld.com now has seven completed translations of Chinese fantasy and martial arts web fiction.
Thirty-year-old Lai Jingping, whose online usernames is RWX, the original founder of the website, is a faithful reader of Chinese martial arts novels.
As he immigrated with his parents to the US from Chengdu in Sichuan province when he was three, RWX only speaks a little Chinese at home and knew little of Chinese characters. The Chinese he first learned is Sichuan dialect that sounds a bit different from Mandarin.
The 1995 TV series, Return of the Condor Heroes (神雕侠侣), based on Louis Cha's novel, aroused RWX's curiosity about Chinese. And in 2004, he began to study Chinese at the University of California, Berkeley.
RWX first tried to translate Louis Cha's works by himself, for English versions of Chinese kung fu novels were rare and very expensive in the US.