UPDATE #52 (10/31/19): Shigeru Speaks! Celebrate Halloween 2019 with a Spooky New Short Story!

Happy Halloween, readers! As a certain Transylvanian Count once intoned, I bid you welcome!

I don’t know about you guys, but Halloween is my favorite time of the year.  After all, October is the one month when being a monster fanatic is socially acceptable!  While watching monster movies and enjoying a good spooky story is a year-round obsession for me, its hard to deny that such ghastly goings on just feel more right on Halloween night.  The weather is gloomy and dark, the leaves on the trees are in that perfect state of half living, half dying, and there/s nothing better than curling up under a warm blanket to partake in a creepy movie or book.

Last year, the GNP celebrated Halloween in style, going all-out with a social media celebration of terrifying tokusatsu flicks, all leading up to the publication of a brand new short story: Casefile”MATANGO”, based on one of Ishiro Honda’s most chilling creature features.  Well, I had so much fun doing it that this year, I decided to do it again!  If you’ve been following along on Facebook and Twitter, the GNP has been counting down 13 DAYS OF TOKU TERROR, all leading to October 31st for a special spooky surprise… and whaddya know, that’s today!  So, without further ado, its time to reveal the GNP’s newest scary story…

In 1956, Toho released its first color kaiju eiga, a brilliant and masterfully constructed spectacle of destruction and horror about a series of ghastly murders in a mine, a race of ravenous giant insects, and a duo of flying reptiles hell bent on the destruction of mankind.  The film was Sora no Daikaiju Radon, or, as its known outside of Japan, Rodan.  I could go on and on about how much I love this film, or about how great it is.  But I’ll spare you all that and just say this… in addition to being entertaining and ultimately tragic, its also a film guaranteed to creep the heck out of you!  Seriously… mutilated bodies fished out of flooded mines?  Giant insects that rip people apart like madmen?  Giant Pterosaurs reducing jet pilots to piles of bloody clothes and simply flying over a building to tear it down? This is scary stuff!  If ever there was a giant monster film that could be called a true horror flick, this, my friends, is it.

In other words, it was the perfect film to adapt for this year’s Halloween story!

Using the plot and flow of the original Japanese cut and combining it with the memorable narration dialogue written for the American version (in a similar fashion to The Steve Martin Report), this new story – which will be presented in two parts to reflect the structure of the film itself – is told in the form of an extended letter written by the film’s main character, Shigeru, played memorably by the great actor Kenji Sahara.  With all the character went through in the film, including watching his friends die and being so traumatized by witnessing Rodan hatch that he looses his memory, I thought his perspective would be an interesting one to view the film through.  I’m pretty proud of the end result, and I hope it will be entertaining for you all to read!

With that said, I think its time for me to stop talking and let you all read!  Happy Halloween to all of you, and I hope you enjoy the first part of the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT’s newest short story: Sora no Daikiju: An Excerpt from the Writings of Shigeru Kawamura.

Read it here.

See you all in November!

UPDATE #51 (9/18/19): It’s Mothra vs. Battra in the GNP’s Newest Short Story!

Greetings, readers! Hard to believe it’s already September, isn’t it?

Before I begin this long overdue update, I’d like to sincerely apologize for the lack of new content as of late. As I mention in the site’s introduction, long stretches of inactivity like this are sometimes unavoidable, and these last few months have thrown enough at me in my personal life that finding the time to write was difficult.  I’d like to thank you all for your patience and continued support, and once again apologize for the long wait between updates.

That said, I’m happy to report that the drought is officially over, and the GNP is back in action with a brand new short story! And what a story it is…

As long-time GNP readers will know, I have a habit of crafting my shorter tales as “in-universe” artifacts. For example, The Steve Martin Report was posited as the actual report crafted by Raymond Burr’s legendary character shortly after the events of 1956’s Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Casefile: MATANGO is presented as the actual testimony delivered by that film’s sole survivor to the authorities. It’s become a tradition of sorts for me to write the GNP’s short stories and novellas in this fashion, and this newest story definitely falls into line with this pattern while tackling the presentation of the prose in a new (and hopefully entertaining) way.

For me, the origin of this newest tale goes all the way back to my childhood, and to my formative years as a Godzilla fan. Some of my fondest memories from this time include watching three particular films from the franchise practically on repeat: 1991’s Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, 1993’s Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II, and last but not least, 1992’s Godzilla vs. Mothra, better known in the US as Godzilla and Mothra: The Battle for Earth. To this day these three films hold an incredibly special place in my heart, and the ’92 take on the immortal character of Mothra remains one of my favorites in her long history. In particular, the tantalizing bits of backstory for her and Battra sprinkled into the script captured my attention. An ancient civilization of Mothra worshippers? Arcane machines that siphoned the life force of the Earth? An ancient battle between Mothra and her dark twin Battra? To me, this felt like it’s own movie just waiting to be made, and my fascination with the storytelling potential of this unexplored period in Mothra’s history is still very much present in my mind today.

And so, in lieu of making an actual film depicting and fleshing out these events (hey, maybe if I were a millionaire!), I decided that such a tale had great potential as a new addition to the GNP’s growing catalogue of “in-universe” short stories. Not only did it allow me to finally put a story that I had been formulating since childhood down into words, but it FINALLY gave me a chance to produce some Heisei era content for the site, which has been long overdue!

And so, after some thinking and planning, I decided to approach the story from an angle not yet used in a GNP project. I reasoned that the tale should be written as an ancient text, in a style similar to a biblical book or ancient epic. For a story set 12,000 years in the past, such an approach seemed like a natural fit. In the end, I think it gives the final product a unique feel that once again proves just how eclectic this site can be in its storytelling styles!

Ultimately, this is a story I’m happy to have told, and while certain elements did have to be invented to flesh out the story, I believe the finished “ancient text” is both true to, and respectful of, the film upon which it’s based.

So, without further ado, the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT is proud to present its newest short story: The Cosmos Apocrypha!

Follow this link to begin reading!

Once again, each and every one of you reading these words has my eternal gratitude for your patience, your patronage, and your support. I hope I can continue to be worthy of the trust you place in me, and that you continue to be entertained by the GNP’s efforts both past and future.

Happy reading, and stay tuned for more announcements soon!

UPDATE #50 (8/19/19): Help Support the GNP with Amazon Affiliate Marketing Links!

Hey there, readers!

It’s been a while since the last update, but rest assured, exciting things are happening behind the scenes! All will be announced in due time, but today, it’s time to reveal one of the bigger things I’ve been working on since G-FEST ended…

On various pages of the website (most notably on each novel’s Contents page) can now be found links to Amazon.com, specifically to items (DVD’s, Blu-rays, books, and more) hand picked by me to appeal to Godzilla fans/kaiju lovers! By clicking these links and purchasing said items, the GNP receives a small monetary percentage of the sale!

Welcome, dear friends, to the wonderful world of affiliate marketing!

Why is this a thing? Much like Patreon, this is a way for the GNP to acquire funds for research material, translators, and the future production of merch for supporters. Affiliate marketing purchases from readers like you might not produce a lot of money at first (perhaps as little as a few cents per purchase), but that money adds up with more clicks and purchases, and the resulting revenue is, like Patreon donations, reinvested right back into the project.

In other words, by using one of the links found across the website (and on a special master list linked below) for your next kaiju-related purchase, you’re not only adding new Godzilla goodies to your collection, but you’re helping the GNP continue to create content at no extra charge to you!

Just as with Patreon, any support via affiliate marketing is immensely appreciated, and to those who would consider using the GNP’s new links to order (or pre-order) their G-swag, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Check out the master list here, and if you see something you like, follow the link and get to buyin’! (Note: this list is still a work in progress. Expect more additions in the future!)

See you soon for the next update, and as always, thank you for your continued support!

UPDATE #49 (7/21/19): A G-FEST XXVI Post Mortem and Exciting Updates!

Happy Sunday, Godzilla fans!

It’s now been almost a week since I safely returned home to GNP HQ after five glorious days in Chicago, where I was ecstatic to be attending my TENTH consecutive G-FEST. As is the case every year, the period immediately following the end of the con is always a sad time, as it means saying goodbye to friends, leaving behind a community of like-minded fans, and not seeing the majesty of the Dealer’s Room for another 12 months.

However, while the conclusion of G-FEST – and subsequent return to the “real world” – is always hard on fans like me, I’m glad to say that, as with last year, the amazing time I had promoting the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT, chatting with readers, and making important research/merchandising connections more than made up for those pesky post-G-FEST Blues.

From co-hosting a panel and dispatching business cards like ninja throwing stars, to connecting with fellow writers, meeting loyal supporters of the project, and even executive producing the Kaiju Crescendo concert (!), the GNP was VERY busy at G-FEST XXVI. And I loved every second of it!

For those curious, here’s a rundown of this year’s highlights:

1) As previously mentioned, friend/fellow writer Nate Marchand and I teamed up to present one of the first panels at this year’s con: an in-depth look into the lives and careers of the Showa era’s unsung writing heroes Shinichi Sekizawa and Takeshi Kimura. It was my first ever panel at G-FEST, and the fulfillment of a ten-year-long dream to one day be part of the convention that had given (and continues to give) me so much happiness. It was a surreal thrill to be at the front of the Crown Plaza’s Kennedy Room, talking to and engaging with an incredibly generous and interested audience.

And speaking of the audience… it was quite a large one! We literally filled that room to capacity. By the time we started our discussion at noon, it was standing room only! I was completely blown away; in ten years of attending G-FEST, I have never seen that particular room so full. It was beyond humbling to see so many Kaiju lovers interested in what we had to say about these two remarkable men.

But the flattery didn’t stop there, as when I introduced myself as the creator of the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT, I received a completely unexpected, nearly ten-second-long round of applause! I was speechless, and, I’ll admit, a bit emotional at the reaction my introduction received. The fact that nearly the entire room knew who I was blew me away, and gave me a massive dose of validation. It was all I could do to keep the waterworks from starting.

If you were among those who attended our panel, I truly thank you from the bottom of my heart. Not only was it amazing to be so warmly received for my own creative endeavors, but it was fantastic seeing so many people interested in learning about the two men we were there to shed some much needed light upon. We had a blast presenting the panel, and we hope you maybe learned something new!

For those who missed it, or attendees who would like to see it again, follow this link to give the panel a watch!

(Also, at the conclusion of the panel, Nate unveiled and launched his exciting new podcast, The Monster Island Film Vault! Be sure to check out the show’s website and give his promo a listen!)

2) As with last year, I was able to talk about the project with fans and readers in person. It was incredibly humbling to see so many people interested and supportive of the idea, and excited to check it out! (At last count, I think I went through something like eighty business cards!) It was also wonderful conversing with Twitter/Facebook followers and even several Patreon supporters, who were wonderfully generous with compliments and suggestions, as well as excited to chat sans computer screen!

3) Again, as with last year, I was legitimately RECOGNIZED for the project on several occasions! Being told “Oh yeah! I’ve heard of that!” or “Wow, I’ve read your stuff and I love it!” is remarkably humbling, and it meant a lot to discover that word of the project is continuing to spread! One of the nicest surprises I got this year was being asked about the project’s progress by none other than Kyle Yount, creator/host of the Kaijucast and a thoroughly awesome dude. Pretty dang cool, if you ask me!

4) I got to meet with fellow writers (many of them with far more experience in writing kaiju stories than me) and pick their brains for tips and tricks on how to make my own novels better. I also met a number of amateur writers who shared their work with me and even expressed interest in future collaborations! I saw a LOT of talent on display this year in the writing department.

5) I made some important and exciting connections with researchers in the field of kaiju history, and reconnected with others whom I had met previously, including the incredibly generous John LeMay, author of several exhaustively researched books on the history of Japanese giant monster films. (Seriously, if you haven’t read The Big Book of Japanese Giant Monster Movies: The Lost Films, PLEASE DO. Its essential reading for any kaiju lover.)

6) Like last year, I was able to connect with some potential merchandising partners! The production of GNP-related swag (t-shirts, keychains, coffee mugs, stickers, etc.) is on the horizon, and several Patreon supporters have expressed interest in upping their pledges to include the above items! Thanks to a few generous individuals who’ve expressed interest in helping me, things are looking good for GNP merch!

7) Last but not least, I was honored to see my name printed on the official program book/poster for the historic Kaiju Crescendo concert as an Executive Producer. Thanks to Kickstarter, I was able to play a small part in helping to make a night of powerful, emotional music a reality, and it’s no exaggeration to say that I was moved to tears by the experience. To see Michiru Oshima lead the orchestra in the performance of her incredible Godzilla scores was transcendent, and John DeSentis was fantastic, as always, as he conducted suites from composers Akira Ifukube and Masaru Sato. The performers all knocked it out of the park, with the highlight (at least for me) being the vocal performance of King Caesar’s song from Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla (1974). It was a night I’ll never forget.

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Whew, I think that’s enough of an update for today! If you made it down that wall of text, good on ya!

Before I go, I’d like to once again express my sincere gratitude to everyone who took interest in the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT over the weekend, and to all of you reading these words right now. Your support truly means the world to me, and I hope I can continue to be worthy of it.
Expect more updates soon as this wonderful, crazy journey continues!

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Is it time for G-FEST XXVII yet?

UPDATE #48 (7/11/19): Its GNP vs. G-FEST!

Greetings, all!

That magical time of the year is upon us again… the time when thousands of kaiju lovers converge on Chicago to celebrate a mutual love for all things Godzilla! Panels will be attended, movies will be watched, autographs will be signed, and wallets will be dramatically depleted.

And we fans will love every precious second of it!

I’ve been fortunate enough to have attended G-FEST for the last 10 consecutive years, and it is truly the BEST weekend of the year for Godzilla enthusiasts. This year is set to be another fantastic experience, and once again, I’ll be representing the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT at this most special gathering of like-minded fans! As with last year, I cannot wait to discuss the project with my fellow attendees, and I hope that I’ll be able to meet some of my readers in person!

However, that’s not all I’ll be up to this weekend. This year, as I mentioned in a previous update, I’ll not only be attending the con, but I’ll be a part of it, as well!

On Friday, July 12th at Noon (tomorrow at the time of this update!), the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will join forces with friend/fellow writer Nate Marchand for an in-depth discussion on the careers and lives of two pivotal players in the history of Godzilla/Kaiju films: screenwriters Shinichi Sekizawa and Takeshi Kimura.

Once again, here’s the official description of the panel:

Most of Toho’s classic tokusatsu films started with scripts penned by the Showa era creative team’s unsung heroes, Shinichi Sekizawa and Takeshi Kimura. Join Nathan Marchand (professional writer and co-creator of Kaijuvision Radio) and Daniel DiManna (creator/author of the Godzilla Novelization Project) as they explain how these polar opposite storytellers revolutionized the kaiju genre.

Sounds fascinating, no?

If you’re attending G-FEST this year, be sure not to miss Nate and I delve into the careers of these two titans of the genre! It’ll be a fun time, and hopefully it’ll shed some much needed light on two guys who tend to be overshadowed by the Ishiro Hondas and Eiji Tsuburayas of Kaiju history.

(Also, be sure to watch for my name in association with the KAIJU CRESCENDO concert! Thanks to Kickstarter, I’m an Executive Producer on the event, and I couldn’t be more thrilled! Be sure to secure your tickets while you can and witness this historic performance!)

So, yeah… this G-FEST is definiteiy shaping up to be a memorable one! Between co-hosting a panel and having my name associated with a live Kaiju concert, the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will be receiving a ton of exposure, hopefully bringing in more readers, fans, and supporters!

I hope to see you all here at the con! If you’re at the show this year, be sure to look for a guy in a “Godzilla Novelization Project” shirt, and stop me if you want to chat!

Let the fun begin!

UPDATE #47 (5/16/19): The MonsterVerse Timeline is Live!

Hey folks, I’m back for another update!  And this one is… and you knew this was coming… legendary. 😉

Today marks 5 years since Gareth Edwards astounded audiences with 2014’s Godzilla.  It’s truly hard to believe that half a decade has passed since Legendary Pictures proved that Hollywood can do Godzilla justice, and unleashed a film that revitalized the franchise all around the world.  But not only did Godzilla kick the series back into gear, it became the launching pad for a bonefide cinematic universe of giant monster movies, A.K.A. the MonsterVerse.  If you had told ten-year-old me (or heck, even 20-year-old me) that such a thing was possible, I’d have probably argued the opposite.  And yet, here we are, with G14 and Kong: Skull Island under our belts and heading for the release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters in just two weeks.  This truly is a remarkable time to be a Godzilla fan.

And so, in celebration of the 5th Anniversary of the MonsterVerse, the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT is proud to announce that the site’s MonsterVerse Timeline has officially launched!

This ongoing project will chronicle the many events, characters, and monsters of Legendary’s ongoing cinematic universe of creature features, all in chronological order and drawing from sources beyond the films, such as the graphic novel prequels, the novelizations, the art books, and viral marketing.

Like the other timelines on the site, this project will be a work in progress.  But I hope the final result will join the Anime and Sony timelines as one of the more beloved pages on the site!

And hey, with the aforementioned Godzilla: King of the Monsters just around the corner, what better way to refresh your MonsterVerse knowledge?

Follow this link to check out the first two parts of the Timeline, and happy reading!

UPDATE #46 (5/13/19): Big News – G-FEST Panels & Kaiju Concerts!

Hello again, readers!

I’ve got BIG news to share today, and it’s all to do with a little event in Chicago called G-FEST

For the past decade, G-FEST has been an intigral part of my life, an annual summer tradition that keeps me motivated to survive yet another year of whatever life throws at me.  Those four, glorious days of living, breathing, and celebrating giant Japanese monsters with like-minded fans truly keep me sane, and walking through the doors of Rosemont’s Crown Plaza hotel every July is truly like coming home.

Every year brings new and wonderful things to my personal convention experience, but this year is particularly special… because not only will I be attending the con, I will actually be a part of it!!

That’s right, folks!  This G-FEST will see me realize a ten-year-long dream to finally join in on the fun of presenting Kaiju knowledge to my fellow fans.  And I couldn’t be more thrilled!

On Friday, July 12th (the first full day of the con) at Noon, the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will join forces with friend/fellow writer Nate Marchand for an in-depth discussion on the careers and lives of two pivotal players in the history of Godzilla/Kaiju films: screenwriters Shinichi Sekizawa and Takeshi Kimura.

Here’s the official description of the panel:

Most of Toho’s classic tokusatsu films started with scripts penned by the Showa era creative team’s unsung heroes, Shinichi Sekizawa and Takeshi Kimura. Join Nathan Marchand (professional writer and co-creator of Kaijuvision Radio) and Daniel DiManna (creator/author of the Godzilla Novelization Project) as they explain how these polar opposite storytellers revolutionized the kaiju genre.

Sounds fascinating, no?

As a Kaiju lover and a writer, I’ve always been intrigued by the incredible dichotomy between these two talented men.  Sekizawa (whose most notable works include the likes of Mothra, King Kong vs. Godzilla, Monster Zero, Godzilla vs. Gigan, and seven other Godzilla flicks) was, by all accounts, a joyous man who not only revolutionized the way monsters were portrayed on screen, but loved doing it, as well. Kimura (whose work includes Destroy All Monsters, Frankenstein vs. Baragon, War of the Gargantuas, King Kong Escapes, and his all-time masterpiece, Matango) was a dour, often dark man, a committed communist who largely disliked being assigned monster pictures.

Needless to say, comparing and contrasting these two creative forces as writers, and as individuals, will be fascinating.

If you’re attending G-FEST this year, be sure not to miss Nate and I delve into the careers of these two titans of the genre! It’ll be a fun time, and hopefully it’ll shed some much needed light on two guys who tend to be overshadowed by the Ishiro Hondas and Eiji Tsuburayas of Kaiju history.

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But wait… there’s more!

As many of you no doubt know, this year’s con will host the third in a series of phenomenal Kaiju music concerts: KAIJU CRESCENDO: AND EVENING OF JAPANESE MONSTER MUSIC, featuring the unforgettable music of composer Michiru Oshima, who will be in attendance to conduct suites from her three Godzilla scores: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, and Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S.  The concert will also feature the works of Akira Ifukube and Masaru Sato, arranged once again by John DeSentis.

Several months ago, a Kickstarter was held to help fund the concert, and I was lucky enough to snag a spot as an official Executive Producer!  It was an opportunity that I simply couldn’t pass up, and it’ll definitely be surreal seeing my name on the posters!

So, yeah… this G-FEST is definiteiy shaping up to be a memorable one!  Between co-hosting a panel and having my name associated with a live Kaiju concert, the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will be receiving a ton of exposure, hopefully bringing in more readers, fans, and supporters!

I hope to see you all at the con in July.  Excluding my own exploits, this G-FEST will, as always, be a memorable weekend on camaraderie and fun, and it’s an experience no Godzilla fan will want to miss!

Stay tuned for more exciting announcements as the convention gets closer!