When did your interest in daikaiju and other giant monsters begin? What inspired it?
Watching giant monster movies on TV are among the earliest of my memories. Even as a preschooler, the idea of nuclear powered dinosaurs roaming the modern world struck me as an incredibly cool concept.
Perhaps you can tell us something of your career to date.
My storytelling remains more of a hobby than a career thus far. I am primarily a graphic artist. It was when I discovered G-Fan magazine that I began to do some serious fiction work. Having my first short see print ("Godzilla versus Varan" in G-Fan #20), I found myself inspired to continue writing a series of Godzilla fiction and help moderate a number of storytelling forums online as "The Eavesdropper". I have found great joy in writing, and have been blessed enough to hear from a few who found a bit of that same joy and inspiration in my work for themselves
I also got to have some great fun haunting the fringes of Daikaiju fandom; hamming it up on Sci-Fi channel’s coverage of G-Con 97 in NYC, and laughing it up doing Godzilla News updates and a big prize giveaway on the Ron and Fez.com radio show back in 2000. Thanks to Monster Zero News, Club Daikaiju and G-Fan magazine for that one!
How many giant monsters stories have you written/had published?
Six shorts with accompanying artwork published in G-Fan magazine, now seven including the Daikaiju! anthology.
My online archives include two more fan fiction shorts; "The Last Godzilla Story" and "Mothra: The Infinity Web", as well as the leading chapters of my always-in-progress original series titled “Crew Kaiju”.
What would you consider your major work to be?
My personal magnum opus is a novel-length work of Godzilla fan fiction titled War against the Wild Gods, published episodically in G-Fan magazine.
Where does your fascination for giant monsters come from (if you have one)?
It probably started with a love of comic books, dinosaurs and mythological beasties. I have always gravitated toward the strange and unusual since I was very young. Blessings and thanks to my parents for tolerating and even indulging my weird whims!
Different people have different ideas as to why the giant monster genre holds such power? What is your take on it?
I think part of the appeal is actually being able to identify with a monster character, say Godzilla in particular, who at his core could be considered a victim striking back at his victimizers. On a somewhat more superficial level, I’m sure there are others who simply get a kick out of watching a good brawl.
What is your favourite giant monster film? Why that one?
Can't nail down a single definitive favourite, but the original un-westernised Godzilla [Gojira] is among them, and to me, introduced a character that literally changed the world.
Are there any written stories or novels featuring giant monsters that you would particularly recommend?
Sure, I just wish there were more!
Gojiro by Mark Jacobson is a witty and somewhat psychotic monster trip, and Saurian by William Schoell is most suspenseful and inventive. You will also find some excellent works of Godzilla fan fiction written by the incomparable Mr Doug Wood at the Kaijuphile website. Check out his anthology entry to see what I mean!
What lies ahead for you?
I've been solicited to do some giant monster illustration work for Mystic Eye Games which I am excited about, but it looks to be a long-term project for me due to an extreme lack of free time.
Can you tell us how you came to write your story for the DAIKAIJU! anthology? What thoughts lay behind it?
Sheer desperation. The well-being of my wife and birth of our first child took overwhelming precedence for me that year, though I remained determined not to miss the opportunity of crafting a tale to submit to the anthology. At the last minute I abandoned the first story concept I had intended to submit, which had grown too complex, and started over intending to keep it simple. Six sleepless weeks later, I think the end result worked out pretty well.
The tale itself combines elements from some of my other stories. Shimura first appeared in "Crew Kaiju: Ranagon" (online at The G-Spot). Tomoyuki was based on "Tommy" from the Eyewitness collaboration at the Kaijuphile website. Varanox and the Dragon Pantheon came from another unused work-in-progress. Armed with a cast of characters I was familiar with and cared about, the final element I needed to pull the story together was the motivation of the tale’s antagonist, which essentially was intended to rip the reader’s heart out and show it to him. There are worse hobbies, I think.
The daikaiju genre (such as it is) has been very film-focused to date. Did this prove a problem when you came to writing your story?
Not at all. I think much of my work tends to read like short film or TV episode plots anyway. The real hurdle is hooking up with a publisher for the stuff.
What would you say to those new to the idea of daikaiju films and stories?
Many folks may write off such fare as being exclusively laughable. I disagree, and contend that one can find classic and new films that are enjoyable on many levels, as well as some truly wonderful examples of storytelling such films have undoubtedly inspired.
Given the nature of my particular anthology entry, I think it is most appropriate for me to attempt to counter the karma of having ravaged mainland Japan on so many occasions by donating my fee to aid Habitats For Humanity in their relief efforts for the victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami that struck on December 26th 2004.