As yet another year draws to a close (and the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT nears its 5th anniversary), I wanted to take a minute to express some gratitude, and – if you’ll indulge me – to get a bit personal.
To put it bluntly, 2022 was full of personal struggle for me, with loss and life upheavals piling up and making it difficult to be as creative as I’d wanted to be. I won’t dwell on the specifics, but between December of last year and today, I’ve had to say goodbye to four friends/family members who’ve passed away, nearly lost three other friends (all of whom are okay now, but damn was it scary), and dealt with the ramifications of some past trauma that seriously impaired my focus, among other things too personal to get into here. A lot of my time this year was spent caring for (and grieving with) family and friends, navigating some tough emotional moments, and reflecting on how beautiful yet fleeting life can be.
I don’t say any of this to complain or to elicit sympathy or pity. Far from it. I like to keep things positive and uplifting within the realm of the GNP, and I certainly don’t want to “harsh anyone’s buzz” or make anyone worry.
I also want it known that, despite all the stuff I mentioned above, I’m doing okay. I’m not ill or depressed, and this year has also given me countless blessings, some of the greatest of my entire life, in fact.
But yeah, if you noticed a sharp decline in the amount of content produced by the GNP this year (from new chapters and short stories to blogs, timeline updates, site updates, and Monster Musings podcast episodes), this is why.
I wanted to acknowledge this for two reasons. Firstly, because – as an audience with a vested interest in my work – I believe you’re owed an explanation for why the content you (hopefully) enjoy has been slow this year.
And secondly, because – despite this slowness and long periods between updates – you’re still here.
In this fast-paced world of content overload, it’s easy for projects and creators to slip out of mind and get buried by content that’s more consistent. But that hasn’t been the case for the GNP. And that absolutely blows my mind.
After the sad year I’ve had, you have no idea how much that means to me.
I don’t typically check or share the GNP’s metrics (clicks aren’t nearly as important to me as knowing I’ve entertained people, however few). But seeing those numbers really put into perspective just how much people genuinely care about this project. Whether they’re longtime readers or curious newcomers, they continue to read. Even with the scarcity of content this year, they still showed up. YOU still showed up.
And so, as we move on to a new year and new possibilities, I wanted to say thank you. Thank you all for being such wonderful readers. Thank you for sticking by me during one of the hardest years of my life, even if you didn’t know the impact you were having. And thank you for being supportive, enthusiastic, patient, and kind. You’ve given me a tremendous gift, and I hope to continue being worthy of the support you’ve shown me.
Onward to 2023, to better days, and to a return to form for the GNP! I promise, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet… 😉
Ho ho hi there, GNP readers! Merry Christmas to you!
I think we can all agree that it’s been way, way too long since the last update. This year has been full of personal struggle for me, and I’ll have more to say about how it’s affected the project in a future update.
However, for now, I want to keep things positive. It’s Christmas, after all! And to celebrate, I think it’s high time for some new content…
Back in November, I teased that a brand-new short story was coming (and even previewed it audiobook-style for my Patrons), but this story goes back even farther than that. I began writing it a year ago, and was making good progress, until a series of life upheavals and struggles forced me to shelve it. Unfortunately, much of the GNP had to take a back seat as I navigated some incredibly testing times.
But now, and just in time for Christmas, the story is finally done, and I hope it will be worth the wait for all of you.
It’s a story you’re likely all familiar with, but told through the perspective of the one who lived it. It’s the tale of a cyborg who dreamt of being human, and of a human girl – trapped and manipulated by forces beyond her control – who dreamed of being loved.
Well, it took me long enough, but I’m finally carrying on a GNP tradition: the G-Fest Post Mortem write up! Three weeks might’ve passed since the con wrapped up its four days of festivities, but the memories of a weekend well spent are still rattling around in my brain, and I think they’re more than worthy of sharing.
Simply put, this year’s G-Fest was truly incredible, both as an attendee and a participant.
For those who might be unaware, G-Fest – the largest gathering of Godzilla fans in the world – has been held annually since 1993. Unfortunately (but understandably), the con – like so many other things – had to be put on the back burner during the tumultuous years of 2020 and 2021. For fans like myself, it was a particularly big blow in a duo of years already filled with sadness, isolation, and fear. G-Fest has always been my place to recharge and re-center among like-minded people (and blow money on expensive toys, of course). I knew that canceling the con was necessary, but I missed it terribly.
The three-year wait for the return of G-Fest was a tense “will it or won’t it?” waiting game. But fortunately, by the time 2022 rolled around, the world had gotten a bit safer. More and more cons began responsibly returning after multi-year hiatuses, and G-Fest XXVII was officially locked in for its usual mid-July slot.
And despite the craziness of the economy and the tightness of my finances, I knew I wasn’t gonna miss it.
In so many ways, this year felt like a new start for the con. A kind of “soft reboot” full of both familiar and new elements. It was the first G-Fest in three years, and the first to be held at their new digs in the Hyatt Regency. A lot of the “old guard” of organizers didn’t attend, and things like the Artist Alley and the Kaiju Konfessions wrap-up party didn’t make it to this year’s event.
But in most ways, it was business as usual. There were panels, art and model rooms, and celebrity guests. The beloved in-house channel (despite being glitchy the whole weekend) made its return, as did movie screenings at the Pickwick and the always amazing costume parade.
However, the pervading conceit behind this year’s con wasn’t the movies, the panels, the parade or whatever the heck happens at those crazy after-hours parties (which I’ve never attended). It was the anticipation. It was the built-up excitement and hope to finally return to a bubble of like-minds and a common interest. It was a desperate need for us to reconnect with each other.
This year’s G-Fest (more so than any other G-Fest I’ve attended) was all about the people.
And thereby hangeth a tale to tell.
On July 14th, I braved the insane gas prices of mid-2022 and hit the road for a solo five-hour drive to Chicago. I arrived just in time to meet up with a group of friends for the first of the Pickwick’s Double-Double Bill screenings of the day, which included Godzilla vs. Hedorah and Godzilla vs. Megalon (both staring one of the con’s special guests, Hiroyuki Kawase). My group included Robert Monsarrat (my “brother in kaiju” and collaborator on “Project: Kayama”), Daikaiju Danielle Fey and her mom Allison (two of my favorite people on the planet and extended family to me), Nate Marchand (the purveyor of The Monster Island Film Vault and about 47 other podcasts), and Elijah Thomas (podcaster, researcher, non-sleeper, good friend, and one of many awesome people I’ve gotten to know over the last three years, but had never met in person).
After the movies, I checked into my hotel room (which wasn’t the room I’d reserved, but I did get a balcony out of the deal!). The Hyatt Regency was an experience all on its own; the place was opulent as all get out, and featured massive ceilings, long walkways, cylindrical glass elevators that ascended on pillars, and probably 14 restaurants. It felt like walking into a sci-fi movie; I spent the entire weekend comparing it to the underground Krell civilization from the 1956 classic Forbidden Planet, and I still stand by the accuracy of that comparison.
After settling into my room, I experienced a major high point of Thursday: getting to walk into the dealers room early and meet a few awesome friends that I’d been dying to see. First up was finally getting to meet the amazing Alyssa Charpentier (author, musician, poet, YouTuber, and all-around creative powerhouse) in person for the first time. She was there to sell her debut novel “Daughter Darkness” and an assortment of other written works (all of which she’d sold by Saturday!) Getting to talk, laugh, and even sing with her in person was a highlight of the whole con.
Next was meeting up with my bud Chris Oglio at Seismic Toys. Chris remains one of the kindest people I’ve ever encountered within this fandom, and he was generous enough to let me reserve a toy a whole day before the room officially opened. How cool is that?
Before I knew it, Friday had dawned and it was time to prepare for another big part of the weekend: hosting panels! As I mentioned in my previous update (and multiple times on social media), I ended up on EIGHT panels at this year’s G-Fest, and the first two – anniversary celebrations for Godzilla vs. Hedorah and Godzilla vs. Gigan – were actually two of the first panels held at the con. I thoroughly enjoyed being on both, and multiple people stopped me after each panel (and at various other points during the weekend) to tell me how much they’d enjoyed what I had to say. Talk about humbling!
The rest of my Friday was spent blowing wads of cash in the dealers room, attending panels (including the opening ceremonies, which reduced me to tears during the “in memoriam” video), and talking with people. So, so many people. I got to finally meet up with the wonderful Kaiju Kim and the super-talented Neil Riebe, chat with a lot of the dealers, and have conversations with random people who I was standing next to in lines or who sought me out to ask questions.
On Saturday, I joined the Terror of Mechagodzilla retrospective panel and the Kaiju Writers panel, both of which went great! It was during this time that I finally put on my GNP tee shirt to wear around the con, and this was when the truly incredible part of the weekend began.
After putting the shirt on, I started getting stopped by people. Every five minutes or so for the next few hours, someone would walk up, tell me they were a big fan of what I did, and thank me. It was… well, to be honest, I’m not quite sure how to adequately describe how it made me feel. It was amazing. Beyond amazing, in fact. And it just kept happening, over and over again.
One fan shook my hand for a solid 30 seconds as he explained how he was so excited to meet me, and how he listened to every podcast I’d been on. Another stopped me to ask questions about upcoming projects and told me how much he enjoyed and respected my work. Yet another pulled me aside after a panel, told me it was “an honor” to meet me, and asked for a picture with me.
Needless to say, it left me speechless, humbled, and emotional. I still lack the words to describe how much it all meant to me.
At a certain point during the weekend, I lost count of all the people who shared their kindness. The sheer number of fans who wanted to chat, asked me questions, and clapped for me when I introduced myself on my panels was beyond anything I could’ve expected.
If you’re among them, please know how deeply appreciated you are.
The rest of Saturday passed in a blur of dealers room visits, amazing panels (with Matt Burkett and Norman England’s “Behind the Kaiju Curtain” panel being a huge highlight), amazing conversations, cheap cheeseburgers, and amazing costumes. One of the best moments of the weekend came when I finally got to meet the one and only Monster Island Buddies (YouTuber extraordinaire and one of the most painfully funny guys in the fandom) and – get this – he saw my GNP shirt, recognized me, and gave me a hug! I certainly wasn’t expecting that!
Sunday is always a melancholy day at G-Fest; while the con wasn’t over yet, a feeling of impending closure hung over the whole day like a cloud. But I didn’t have time to be sad, mostly because four of my eight panels were spread out over that last wonderful day. The King Kong vs. Godzilla 60th Anniversary panel (viewable on YouTube at the link) was great fun (I even brought my copy of the dinosaur picture book Dr. Johnson uses in the American version to set on the table), and the Akira Takarada fan tribute panel was an emotional but healing hour of personal stories, remembrance, and celebration.
Between trips to the dealers room, I connected with even more fans and friends: Matt Burkett of Monstrosities, Jay Key from TokuToyTown, my pals Benny and Max (who accompanied me on G-Tour in 2016), Greg Noneman, Brenden Morley, Kevin Horn, Avery Guerra, Matt Walsh… just so many amazing people.
Sunday was also the day I finally got to reconnect with the fine fellows at Aardvark Tees, and to finally meet people like Ron Bonk (the mastermind behind SRS Cinema) and kaiju toy maker Fumiaki Kawakami (the creator of the Y-MSF toy line). It was also autograph day, and getting to see Tomoko Ai again, meet Kawase-san, and speak with Akira Takarada’s son and daughter-in-law was beyond special.
My last two panels – a script doctor session with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah and the Kaiju Podcasters and YouTubers panel – went amazing, and my final adventure for the weekend was to join Kaiju Kim for a fun and emotional post-convention livestream. By this time, I’d long since checked out of my room and beginning my inevitable five-hour drive home was becoming more and more necessary. I simply didn’t want to leave, and by the time I’d finally said my goodbyes and given my final hugs, it was nearly 9:00 PM.
I rolled into my little corner of Ohio at 2:00 AM, and five hours later, I was getting ready for work. After three years of anticipation and four days of soul-affirming camaraderie, it was back to the grind.
But (and this is gonna sound cheesy, so bear with me) my heart was so full, that I couldn’t be too sad.
At the end of the day, being back at G-Fest after so many years was beyond cathartic. The genuine love and support I got from friends and readers was tremendous and emotional, and the many kind words I got from fans of the GNP, my academic writing, and my podcast appearences were, to put it mildly, remarkably humbling.
Like I said before, this G-Fest was all about the people. And if you were one of those people – whether you were a friend, a supporter, or both – I want you to know that you enriched my weekend experience and warmed my heart in equal measure. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you all.
And I don’t know about you guys, but I’m already planning for next year. G-Fest might’ve just ended, but the next one can’t come soon enough.
Thank you all for reading, and for being the best fans a writer could ask for. More GNP content is coming your way soon, so stay tuned, and remember: live every day like it’s G-Fest!
Happy July, GNP readers! Welcome to Upd-eighty-nine! (Don’t look at me like that. It was the last time I could use that joke.)
Anyway, corny gags aside, it’s time to talk conventions. Specifically, one very special convention that I’ve been missing desperately for the last three years…
That’s right: July is finally upon us, and I’m thrilled to announce that the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will be descending on G-Fest XXVII in a big way. Not only will I be at the con all four days to meet readers and promote the project, but I’ll also be participating in not one… not two… but EIGHT panels!
Yep, you read that right. I can’t believe it either!
Between Friday, July 14th and Sunday, July 17th, I’ll be running around like crazy to nerd out on a kaiju-sized collection of panels (including anniversary panels for Godzilla vs. Hedorah, Godzilla vs. Gigan, and King Kong vs. Godzilla, discussions about Terror of Mechagodzilla and the legacy of Akira Takarada, the kaiju writers panel, a kaiju podcasting panel, and a special deep-dive into the time-travel of Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah)!
It’ll be a busy weekend, for sure, but I couldn’t be more thrilled to be going, seeing old friends, and making new ones. It’s because of the support I get from readers like you that I’m able to participate in events like this, and I’m so grateful to you all.
Check out the descriptions below (copied from the G-Fest website) for details, dates, and locations for all eight panels:
Godzilla vs. Hedorah: A Belated 50th Birthday
(12:00 PM, Grand Ballroom B/C) – Godzilla vs. Hedorah is unquestionably one of the most unusual Godzilla films. Almost universally panned when it first came out, the film has enjoyed a reappraisal and renewed interest in recent years. It’s a year late, but we’re here to celebrate Hedorah’s 50th birthday! Come join us! (Alyssa Charpentier, Nick Crispino, Danny DiManna, Darin Read, Dennis Roth, Brian Scherschel)
Godzilla vs. Gigan 50th Anniversary
(1:00 PM, Grand Ballroom B/C) – In 1972, Godzilla vs. Gigan was released as part of the Toho Champion Festival. To keep the kids in their seats, the filmmakers filled the screen with classic monsters (Godzilla, King Ghidorah, Anguirus), a new creation (Gigan), manga, and lots of on-screen action. An accomplished group of panelists discusses this bizarre yet enjoyable entry in the G-series. (Kevin Horn, Daniel DiManna, Brian Scherschel, Danny Tokarz)
End of an Era: Terror of Mechagodzilla
(10:00 AM, Grand Ballroom A) – In 1975, the release of Terror of Mechagodzilla marked the end of the Showa Era of G-films. It features Godzilla, Mechagodzilla, Titanosaurus, and a romance between a man and a cyborg, played by Tomoko Ai. This panel discussion sets the stage for Ms. Ai’s interview! (Nick Crispino, Daniel DiManna, Billy DuBose, Nathan Marchand, Dennis Roth)
Kaiju Writers Unite!
(2:00 PM, Grand Ballroom A) – G-FEST isn’t complete without a little love and help for the monster-loving wordsmiths. Author/Podcaster Nathan Marchand (host of The Monster Island Film Vault, author of Destroyer) presides over a panel of kaiju writers, consisting of Daniel DiManna (creator/author of the Godzilla Novelization Project), Alyssa Charpentier (AlyssaGojiGeek on YouTube, author of Daughter Darkness), Ryan Collins (The Omni Viewer on YouTube, author of Operation: Red Dragon), and Christopher Nigro (founder and editor-in-chief of Wild Hunt Press). They are ready, willing, and able to answer all your questions about the craft and business of writing. Come curious and inquisitive!
King Kong vs. Godzilla 60th Anniversary
(10:00 AM, Grand Ballroom B/C) – King Kong vs. Godzilla was a special entry in the Godzilla franchise. It revived the series after a seven year hiatus. It holds the record for the highest attendance of any film in the series. And for many fans, through movie houses, drive-ins, and TV screens, it was the film that launched their obsession with the kaiju film genre. The panelists will discuss the history and impact of this classic film. (Danny DiManna, Kevin Horn, Nathan Marchand, Dennis Roth)
A Fan Tribute to Akira Takarada
(11:00 AM, Grand Ballroom B/C) – Akira Takarada had a special relationship with G-FEST, attending multiple times over the years to interact with his fans. This panel of fans will pay tribute to Takarada-san and discuss their interactions with him over the years. (Daniel DiManna, Billy DuBose, Bob Eggleton, Nathan Marchand)
Untying Godzilla’s Gordian Knot: Can Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah Be Fixed?
(2:00 PM, Grand Ballroom A) – Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah is one of the most popular entries in the Heisei Godzilla series, but it also has one of the most confusing and convoluted scripts of the franchise. Why did the Futurians stop in 1992 to pick up the main cast? How did everyone remember Godzilla when he was supposedly erased from history? Why did Emi decide to turn on her comrades? Such are just a few of the questions fans have asked. Writer/Podcaster Nathan Marchand (The Monster Island Film Vault, Henshin Men, The Power Trip) and Author Daniel DiManna (Godzilla Novelization Project) try to answer in this “script doctor” session. (Nathan Marchand, Daniel DiManna)
Talkustasu: Kaiju and Tokusatsu YouTubers/Podcasters Roundtable
(4:00 PM, Grand Ballroom B/C) – The kaiju and tokusatsu YouTube and podcasting communities have exploded over the last few years, with shows ranging from collectibles to academic film appreciation to audio dramas. Several of the creators come together to discuss the art and craft of content creation (it’s more than talking into a mic, people!) and take questions from fans and listeners in the audience. (Michael Callari, Jake DeNunzio, Daniel DiManna, Kaiju Kim, Nathan Marchand, Elijah Thomas)
Whew, now that’s what I call a busy weekend!
If you’re going to G-Fest this year, be sure to pop by one (or all) of these panels, or stop me when you see me! I’m excited to chat with readers face to face, and you might even get a shiny new business card out of the interaction! All kidding aside, I can’t wait to see those of you who are making the trek to Chicago. (And for those of you who aren’t attending, no worries! I might do a post-G-Fest livestream when I get home, so we can chat then!)
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for more G-Fest (and other GNP) updates coming soon!
Man on man, it feels great to be posting an update about a new chapter again! It’s been too long, and I’ve missed it terribly.
A week ago, I posted a “joke” chapter for the GNP’s adaptation of the original Godzilla. Maybe it was inspiration from reading through that first chapter of the book again, maybe guilt over tricking people into thinking there was a new chapter to read, or possibly a combination of both… but whatever the reason, it wasn’t too long after posting the prank chapter that I decided it was high time to give this particular book a real new chapter…
To that end, I’m happy to announce that as of right now, the third chapter of the GNP’s ongoing adaptation of 1954’s Godzilla has been published for the world to read! It’s been a long time since I’ve returned to this most significant of films for the project, but for various reasons, I felt like it was finally time to get back into writing Chapter 3. And I’m so glad I did. I know people have been asking for this book to continue for a while now, and it felt great to finally finish the next installment.
(Oh, and if you thought I’d forget that this is ”Updeighty-Eight” posted on the 8th, then you’d be mistaken! C’mon, I only have one more update where I can use that joke, and I have to squeeze it in where I can…)
Yesterday, I took to Twitter, Facebook, and Patreon to announce that a newly revamped version of ”Godzilla: Chapter 1” had just been published.
Here’s what I said:
The GNP is proud to present an all-new, revamped edition of the very first chapter of GODZILLA (1954)!
This was the first content published for the project over four years ago, and I’ve come a long way as a writer since then. I’ve wanted to go back and polish this chapter for a while now, and this is my first attempt at updating my older work.
This is something I’ve never tried before, so definitely let me know what you think after you’ve checked it out.
This post was accompanied by a link that appeared to lead to this new version of Chapter 1, and over the course of 12 hours, nearly three-dozen people clicked it. [Insert evil laugh here]
The true nature of the post was pretty obvious to those who then clicked the link, but for those who didn’t, this “all-new, revamped” chapter was obviously my contribution to yesterday’s April Fools Day shenanigans.
April Fools has been a fun tradition here at the GNP nearly since its inception. From tricking people into thinking I was starting a Godzilla 2014 novelization to writing an entire funny short story in 2020, good-natured pranks are part of what makes interacting with readers so fun! I’ve never wanted to do anything mean or too off the wall; humorous tricks and all-around goofiness are my style. And this year’s prank was definitely goofy.
Basically, when the link was clicked, what readers found was a “broken” version of GODZILLA’s first chapter, completely messed up and full of formatting, grammatical, spelling, and word-choice errors. If they made it all the way to the bottom, a funny gif awaited them.
So yeah, in case you’s still a bit confused (based on some messages I got, plenty of people were a bit baffled by this seemingly inept version of the chapter suddenly popping up), the page is 100% NOT a new-and-improved version of the chapter, and as of right now, I have no intention of ever completely rewriting older work. This was just a goof, and if you were one of the readers who clicked the link, I hope it gave you a chuckle!
As with all my previous April Fools pranks, I’ll be leaving the link to the joke version of the chapter live (but with a changed name to avoid confusion). And don’t worry, the original “Godzilla: Chapter 1” is still intact on its own page, and can still be accessed via the usual links on the website.
Thanks for being good sports, and if you fell for this prank, then, well…
Greetings, awesome people! Welcome to Updeighty-six! (Yes, I can sense you rolling your eyes through the screen. And no, I’m not sorry.)
Anyway, bad puns aside, its finally time to jump into the latest edition of the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT’s patented (and long-winded) STAUS REPORT! This bi-annual deep dive into the progress of the GNP is a great opportunity to discuss everything going on with the project, and they’re usually pretty in depth and hefty on the ol’ word count.
However, this report will be a bit more succinct than previous ones, largely because the last six months have seen fewer updates to the GNP than I would’ve liked. The reasons for this are plentiful, and – without getting too personal – range from starting a new job and other creative projects to a myriad of family emergencies and – most unfortunate of all – the deaths of two family friends.
I won’t dwell on these things too much, but needless to say, my attention was required elsewhere quite a lot over the winter months. But even with all the challenges being thrown at me since the last status report in the fall of 2021, the GNP has still seen quite a lot of growth and even a few new projects started! It all happened slower than I wanted (heck, this report was supposed to drop on February 22nd, but a family car accident put the kybosh on those plans), and there’s definitely less to discuss than usual, but despite a crazy half a year, work still got done, and I’m quite pleased with both its quality and reception.
So sit back, get comfortable, put on your reading glasses (if you’re lucky and don’t need reading glasses, feel free to skip this step), and check out the status of every GNP project, as well as what’s in store for readers like you in the coming months! Let’s dive in.
GODZILLA: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Not much to say here, as this is one of many novelizations that hasn’t gotten an update in quite some time. However, this is a book that I get asked about frequently, with many readers telling me that this is their favorite adaptation on the site. So if you’ve been waiting patiently for Godzilla: Chapter 3, don’t worry… it’s coming! One exciting new detail about this one is the fact that I might just have a narrator lined up to read a potential audiobook version, but that’s an update for another day…
KING KONG VS. GODZILLA: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
As I said in the last status report, the adaptation of this film (which is based on the legendary original Japanese cut of the film, unavailable in the United States until recently) has been a unique and exciting opportunity for the GNP. To be able to present Honda and Sekizawa’s original, hilariously satirical vision to western readers is truly an honor, and it’s something I’m definitely taking my time on.
Only Chapter 1 has been completed and posted thus far, and my continuing research into the period (specifically the Japanese “Economic Miracle” and its effects on television, advertising, and big business) has prevented me from converting my outlines into further chapters. However, this remains another popular adaptation on the site (despite consisting of a single chapter!), so once I feel satisfied with the research, work on the next chapter can continue.
MOTHRA VS. GODZILLA: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
The next chapter of this adaptation (and the next “in universe” newspaper article penned by Akira Takarada’s character, Ichiro Sakai) has already been outlined and given a fair amount of research. The next part of the story will begin with the Sakai article, and then move into the examination of the “monster egg” by our heroes… and one very smarmy villain. This isn’t one I’ve worked on for a while, but I’m hoping to dedicate some time to it soon. Stay tuned!
ALL MONSTERS ATTACK: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Two chapters in, and this adaptation remains a joy to write. The most recent chapter was received very well, and work on the next one is on-again, off-again. Research into the tumultuous era that produced this unique story is ongoing, and putting this oft-derided film into its proper historical context remains a massively important part of this adaptation. Since the last chapter’s publication, I’ve done a lot more research into Japan’s late-1960s “Traffic Wars,” and even wrote an in-depth article on the subject that got a shout-out from Steve Ryfle! I’m not sure when the next chapter is coming, but I hope it’s soon.
GODZILLA VS. HEDORAH: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Ah yes, the big one. As of this update, this adaptation remains the longest novel on the site, currently sitting at seven chapters. In fact, this particular book is dangerously close to nearing the halfway point of the movie! I still consider it the frontrunner for becoming the first finished GNP novelization, and while I had planned to write multiple new chapters to close out 2021, my aforementioned family emergencies kept that from happening. But don’t worry, more will be coming later this year!
GODZILLA VS. GIGAN: THE UNIFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Readers have really been enjoying this one, and I have been, too. This is another book I’d planned to write more of in late 2021, but with 2022 being the 50th anniversary of this awesome movie, you can definitely expect some Gigan goodness coming your way, and sooner than you might think!
GODZILLA VS. MEGALON: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Godzilla vs. Megalon is another book I’ve put on the back burner over the last few months. While readers were enjoying it, I hit a few snags and decided my creative energies were best directed elsewhere. That said, Chapter 2 is still being converted from an outline/notes to actual chapter.
GODZILLA VS. MECHAGODZILLA: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Unfortunately, the status on this book remains the same as the last time progress was shared a few months ago. Much like Mothra vs. Godzilla, a surprising amount of research is required to make this novel authentic. Specifically, knowledge of the history of Okinawa, its past and then (1974) current relationship to Japan, and its unique religious background are all necessary in presenting an accurate portrayal of the setting of the story.
The good news is that research into these topics is going well, if slowly. Once I have acquired the necessary knowledge to accurately portray the setting of the film, then work on the next chapter will resume.
GODZILLA VS. SPACEGODZILLA: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
This is the most recent novel started on the site, and as of this writing, it is planned to be the last for some time. As mentioned elsewhere, the focus of the project is now squarely on crafting new chapters for already started books. The entire idea behind having multiple adaptations being worked on at the same time was to give the site some variety during its early days, and after two-and-a-half years, I felt that the variety I was looking for was finally in place.
That said, the adaptation of Spacegodzilla has been wonderful to work on, as it’s always been a personal favorite film of mine in the franchise, as well as a film that I feel is far better than its reputation. I haven’t dedicated much time to Chapter 2 in quite a while, but I’m hoping to jump back into it after doing a bit more work on Hedorah.
GMK: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
Without getting too much into the story here, this is a particularly special adaptation for the GNP. This book was a special request from a wonderful Godzilla fan named Josh, a young man whose bravery in the face of life-altering health issues continues to humble me. More than three years after #GodzillaforJosh started trending on social media, I couldn’t be more thrilled that Josh is thriving and remains both loved and supported by Godzilla fans far and wide.
First and foremost, this book is for him. The next chapter was in development early last year, but was another casualty of my late-2021 shenanigans. I plan on getting the next part out sometime this summer, and I can’t wait for both Josh and all of you to read it.
GODZILLA AGAINST MECHAGODZILLA: THE UNOFFICIAL NOVELIZATION
This story is a unique one for the project as it is being told from MULTIPLE perspectives, including jumping between first-person accounts of the film’s events (such as the Prologue taking Akane’s perspective) and traditional third-person chapters. The final result should make for an interesting (and hopefully coherent) read that continues to be an exciting challenge to write! The next chapter will assume a new perspective as the events following Godzilla’s initial nighttime attack are seen through the eyes of the government, specifically Kumi Mizuno and Akira Nakao’s characters.
THE SHORT STORIES & NOVELLAS
This one – no pun intended – has been an interesting case. The story – told as an “in-universe” testimony delivered by the film’s sole survivor upon his rescue – was stuck at five parts, plus an introduction, for several years. Thankfully, thanks to audience interest, Part 6 was published in October to celebrate Halloween! It was a blast getting back into the story after such a long break, and while I’d hoped to get Part 7 done before the end of the year, it never happened. My current plan is to finish it within the next few months, and wrap up the entire story before the end of the year. This tale of madness and mushrooms is getting closer to the finish line!
THE BIRTH OF GODZILLA
If you haven’t picked up on the pattern yet, 2021 and the beginning of 2022 have been dominated by short stories. In July, the project pubished “The Tiny Beauties and Mothra“, and in November (to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah), I started work on what might be the most ambitious and twisted GNP project yet: an adaptation of the in-universe book from the 1991 movie, “The Birth of Godzilla.” This doozy of a novella was actually supposed to have been completed by now, but… you guessed it, family emergencies. This particular story has been getting a lot of exposure (I recently did an interview with the wonderful Kaiju Kim about its development and the writing process behind it), and the next part is already well underway. It should be out soon!
Ever since launching the Timeline section of the site, I have been absolutely blown away by the amount of attention it has gotten. Even on days when the novelizations receive little web traffic, all of the timelines get an often shocking number of views. It’s been humbling to see that all the hard work that goes into researching, cataloguing, and writing the (sometimes obscure) facts in these timelines is being appreciated and enjoyed by fans!
Work on the timelines has slowed in recent months, but work is still being done behind the scenes on research for future updates. I’m even planning to launch a new timeline soon, so be on the lookout for that!
THE “MONSTER MUSINGS” BLOG/PODCAST
Without a doubt, this is easily the biggest chunk of the GNP’s productivity over the last half a year. Back in the fall of 2021, I restarted the Monster Musings blog as a Patreon-exclusive podcast, and I’m already 25 episodes in! It seems like Patrons are enjoying it, and it’s been a blast to work on every week. I’m hoping to do more written Monster Musings soon, but if you’re interested in listening to the podcast version, you can check it out for only $1 a month on Patreon!
As always, even with all the delays I’ve had to deal with over the last few months, there’s a LOT more going on behind the scenes of the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT than it might seem. There are a ton of chapters that have been outlined, and a number of concepts that have been documented for future use. Research on various aspects of the series continues on a daily basis, and new opportunities for collaboration and promotion are manifesting for the project, including merch production, potential audio books, and more!
In addition, the GNP has also started experimenting with a new frontier: video content! To celebrate 4 years of the GNP on February 22nd, I did my very first solo livestream and spent three hours answering fan questions. It was a blast, and with more than 20 people tuning in throughout the night, it looks like readers were having fun, too. I streamed the AMA on my long-dormant “Kaijulosophy” YouTube channel, and if my plans come to fruition, you should start seeing the name “Kaijulosophy” (a word I made up a few years ago to describe my own approach to loving monster movies) a lot more often…
I’ve also collaborated with a bunch of other kaiju-related creative endeavors to continue spreading the love for giant monsters. I’ve appeared on the Monster Island Film Vault podcast multiple times, discussed Ultra Q on Kaiju Weekly, did a lot more voice acting, wrote and performed in a Rifftrax-style takedown of The War in Space, edited a new isue of Kaiju Ramen magazine, and wrote two new articles for the publication – one on Ultraman, and another on Gigan for the Kaiju Ramen website. I’m set to write multiple new articles for what’s now being called Kaiju Ramen Media, as well as a new short story for the recently Kickstarted Kaiju Ramen: Volume 1, which also had a bit of input from yours truly!
Through it all, I’ve been blown away by how supportive each and every one of you continue to be. Whether you’re a casual visitor to the site or one of my wonderful Patreon supporters, it’s your kindness, dedication, and willingness to take time out of your day to read my work that truly fuels this project. You’ll never know how unbelievably grateful I am for each and every one of you.
Whew, we made it! Another GNP status report is now in the can, and if you made it this far down the preceding wall of text, I thank you for sticking with it until the end. I feel it’s important to keep you guys in the loop, so hopefully these reports are appreciated.
That said, I’d like to wrap up by, once again, thanking you all for your support, your encouragement, your patience, and your faith. Being able to pursue this dream is an incredible gift, and doing it without readers would be a difficult challenge, to say the least. The last few months have been a real hurtle to jump, with my personal life throwing new issues at me on a regular basis. But despite all the delays and stretches of unproductivity, you’ve stuck with me, and I thank you so much for that.
It has been one heck of an amazing four years, but I assure you, we are just getting started. There will be much more to read, more camaraderie to be enjoyed, and (hopefully!) more fun to be had. I hope you’ll all continue to come along for the ride. Thanks to you all! Stay happy, stay safe, and, as always, Long Live the King!
Today’s update is a short one, but it’s also (hopefully) exciting for all of you!
It’s time to save the date, because the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will be celebrating its 4th anniversary on Tuesday, February 22nd, with an “Ask Me Anything” livestream!
This is something I’ve wanted to do for a while now, and the upcoming anniversary of the project seemed like as good a time as any. A lot of Godzilla/kaiju content creators stream regularly, and while I’ve participated in my fair share of streams (from co-hosting convention panels to being interviewed), I’ve never done my own. Well, that’s about to change, and I’m inviting all of you to join in the fun!
If you have a question for me, ask it by leaving a comment on the GNP’s Twitter or Facebook pages, email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org (as always, sorry for the long name), or drop it in the comments below on this post before 7:00 PM EST on Tuesday, and I’ll answer it live. It doesn’t even have to be GNP/Godzilla related; if your inquiring mind wants to know, I’ll gladly chat about it!
If enough people tune in, other activities might include a collection tour, kaiju-themed chit-chat, and general nerdiness.
“This is my book. I mean, it’s a book I’m gonna write in the future!”
Well, it might’ve taken three decades, but that future has finally arrived…
Hello, GNP readers, and welcome to… wow, almost halfway through December already? Time really does fly, which is an appropriate sentiment given the Godzilla film celebrating its anniversary today.
It’s truly insane to think that 1991’s Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah is now 30 years old. I first saw it around 20 years ago, a few years after it made its North American home video debut. The impact it left on me was nothing short of fundamental; from its crazy time travel plot to its wonderfully entertaining story, I was completely hooked. In fact, I was obsessed. I spent hours as a child contemplating, unraveling, and immersing myself into its plot. I reenacted the battles with dinosaur toys, ripped off a few story elements for tales I was writing, and practically memorized the script.
Of all the Godzilla films, this one might’ve had the most profound impact on my burgoning fandom outside of the duo of films that introduced me to the character: 1999’s Godzilla 2000 and 1964’s Mothra vs. Godzilla. All these years later, it remains near and dear to my heart, and a film that I’ve wanted to celebrate as part of the GNP ever since launching the project nearly four years ago.
And – as you’ve likely been able to gather from the fact that this post exists and you’re currently reading it – today is that day.
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT is proud to present the beginning of a new story: a full-length, in-depth recreation of “The Birth of Godzilla” by Kenichiro Terasawa, the book seen in the film that lays out the theory of Godzilla’s origins.
In addition (as discussed in a previous update), the text also contains working editorial notes from Terasawa as he struggles to write a book that fate dictates must exist in order for the future – and the past – to unfold as intended.
This story has been a joy to write, and with at least six more chapters to go, there’s still plenty of fun to be had! If you’ve ever wondered what was in that dusty old book the Futurians brought back in time and handed to Terasawa, I think you’ll like what’s in store for you…
It’s hard to believe that 2021 is almost in the rearview mirror. And for Godzilla lovers, it’s been a landmark year in many ways. Godzilla vs. Kong stomped into – and helped save – theaters across the world, a veritable avalanche of new merchandise was released, and multiple films in the series (and beyond) celebrated major anniversaries. Toho celebrated the 50th anniversary of Godzilla vs. Hedorah with plenty of bravado, and the original 1961 Mothra crossed the 60-year threshold in July.
But before 2021 can officially end, there’s one more Godzilla film that must be celebrated. A film that had a huge impact on audiences when it arrived in Japanese theaters an amazing 30 years ago this December. And – if I may be personal for a moment – a film that was crucial in the early years of my G-fandom, and an entry in the series that I’ve carried with me and deeply cherished for two decades.
That film is, of course, 1991’s Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah. And I’m incredibly thrilled to announce that the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will be celebrating its 30th birthday in style.
And by style, I mean one of the most in-depth, complex, and downright unusual stories ever tackled by the project in its nearly four-year history. Allow me to explain…
While a full novelization for Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah will definitely be coming to the GNP one day, I felt that beginning the book wasn’t quite the way I wanted to celebrate this particular anniversary. I wanted to do something a bit smaller and more contained, but still part of the world of the film. I also wanted to do something that has (at least to my knowledge) never been done before, and something that explores the rich (most might say convoluted) time travel aspect of the story.
And boy howdy, did I ever find an idea that excited me. It’s actually an idea I began working on a year and a half ago, but with this December marking a major anniversary for the film, I figured that this was the perfect time to get started.
But enough of the cryptic talk. Let’s dive into the details…
Cast your mind back to the early events of the film, specifically the sequence in which sci-fi novelist Kenichiro Terasawa is summoned by the Japanese government to take part in the Futurians’ mission to remove Godzilla from history. After arriving, he is presented with a most remarkable object: a book called The Birth of Godzilla. A book that Terasawa will one day write, but one that his present-day self has only just begun to research. Terasawa soon learns that in the distant future, the book will become the basis of the Futurians’ entire operation; in the year 2204, the power-hungry terrorists discover the book and come to believe Terasawa’s theory that a massive theropod dinosaur – witnessed on a South Pacific island during WWII – eventually mutates into Godzilla due to exposure to nuclear fallout in the 1950s. Their belief in this theory is what leads to the concoction of their evil plans, namely the supposed “erasure” of Godzilla from history, the rise of King Ghidorah, and the subjugation of the Japanese people.
In other words, The Birth of Godzilla is one deeply significant bargain-bin hardcover.
Aside from being significant to the plot of the film, the book itself seems like it would be a fascinating read for any Godzilla fan. In addition to Terasawa’s “Lagos dinosaur” theory, the book would’ve also likely been packed with paleontological information (courtesy of Katsuhiko Sasaki’s character, Professor Masaki), photographs of both Godzilla and the Godzillasaurus from the collection of Lagos Garrison survivor Yasuaki Shindo (Yoshio Tsuchiya), and possibly even interviews with Shindo and fellow Lagos veteran Masukichi Ikehata.
It’s absolutely a book that most G-Fans would want in their collection. And if you’re such a fan, I have good news for you…
On December 14th – the 30th anniversary of Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah – the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT will proudly present the first part of an extensive, fleshed-out recreation of Gojira Tanjo, a.k.a. The Birth of Godzilla. The novella will be the first attempt (again, that I’m aware of) to actually fully reproduce this artifact from the movie, complete with all the historical, theoretical, interview, and photographic content mentioned above. I’m even planning to recreate the cover art seen on the prop book in the movie.
Pretty cool, right? Well, I’m not done yet. Because – just like the movie itself – there’s a complex twist to this project…
Cast your mind back – once again – to the movie, and take a moment to step into the mind of Terasawa himself. Imagine that visitors from the future have handed you a book that you have yet to write, and you come to learn a couple of key things about that book:
You eventually write it and nail almost every part of the theory, but not all of it
After all your hard work, the book never becomes a bestseller, and ultimately fades into obscurity
Its creation and future discovery by terrorists will lead to the creation of a destructive monster, the deaths of countless innocent Japanese citizens, and the loss of important people in your life like Mr. Shindo
Heavy stuff, no?
With all of that knowledge now in your possession, what do you do? Do you choose not to write the book at all? Do you choose to write it differently in an attempt to change the future and therefore the past?
Or do you make the unprecedented decision to write the book exactly as history dictates it must be written as a means of preserving a future that, while tragic, must come to pass in order for events to play out the way they were meant to?
While the film itself doesn’t take the time to explore these concepts, if you stop and think about it, Terasawa is a man with the weight of the world on his shoulders. He’s cursed with knowledge of the future, and the book he has yet to write will play a crucial part in that future. With everything he knows by the end of the movie, he could just as easily decide to not write to book. Likewise, he could also choose to write it differently, perhaps correcting his errors (like the erroneous idea that the 1954 and Heisei Godzillas are somehow the same beast, which they’re not) or documenting the fact that the Heisei Godzilla was born due to a nuclear submarine crash in the 1970s. Heck, the guy could just print the words “THE FUTURIANS ARE EVIL, DON’T TRUST THEM!” across all the pages and be done with it.
But he doesn’t. The fact that the book exists in 2204 for the Futurians to find is proof that Terasawa did eventually write the book, regardless of any reservations or fears he may have had. If time travel in the Heisei Godzilla universe really does function as a closed loop in which history cannot be changed, that means Terasawa has to write the book. Perhaps he has no choice. Perhaps the concept of “choice” is only an illusion; maybe cosmic forces beyond his control are compelling him to write it in an attempt to course correct and prevent paradoxes. Maybe he’s only a pawn in a larger temporal chess game.
What would that kind of pressure do to a person? How does someone deal with the knowledge that they must create something which will lead to suffering, something that must exist in order for the future to play out as intended?
Quite a lot of heavy questions for a movie about a nuclear dinosaur fighting a three-headed dragon, isn’t it?
Well, that’s what I do best: think way too hard about monster movies. And with this project, I intend to put all of that hard thinking to good use.
So, here’s the deal: the GNP’s recreation of The Birth of Godzilla won’t just be a simple recreation. It will also include working notes, ideas, concepts, and writings from Terasawa himself as he goes through the process of writing the book. Think of it as a cross between a history tome and a journal; the reader will see Terasawa doubt himself, cross things out, leave notes on things that have to be corrected (or even written intentionally wrong in order for history to be fulfilled), and ultimately go on a journey to play his role in preserving the future.
The end result will be a “working version” of The Birth of Godzilla, the book equivalent of a film work print. All the words are there, all the pictures are there, but it has yet to be polished. Part scientific exploration of Godzilla’s origins, part psychological exploration of a man compelled to craft a book that is destined to exist, whether he wants it to or not.
So, there you have it! Obviously, this concept is a lot to take in. It’s bizarre, it’s twisted, and it’s a bit complicated. But hey, so is Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah. And that’s why we love it.
I’m genuinely excited to get this crazy idea out of my head and onto paper (well, metaphorical paper), and I’m even more excited to be able to share it with all of you. It’s out-of-the-box ideas like this that really fire my creative engines, and I hope you’ll come along for the ride as I begin this new story!
Again, the first part of The Birth of Godzilla drops on the GNP website on December 14th.
(Also, remember: Patrons of the GODZILLA NOVELIZATION PROJECT get early access to information, excerpts, and entire chapters before anyone else. In fact, all of the information above was shared with Patrons over the weekend! If you’re interested in supporting the GNP, visit the project’s Patreon page and join the club for as low as $1 a month!)
Thank you all for reading this huge announcement. If you made it to the end, you’re a trooper. Stay tuned to the website and to the GNP’s social media pages for updates on this project as December 14th gets closer, and spread the word to your fellow G-Fans so they know this is happening! I’ll see you all for the next update. Stay happy, stay safe, and remember: have your Dorats spayed or neutered to prevent any and all unexpected nuclear-fueled biological fusions. You’ll thank me later.