I’m sure most of you don’t need to be told, but yep, yesterday’s post about AI book covers was, obviously, the GNP’s annual April Fools prank!
I say “obviously,” but I felt the need to make doubly sure that everyone knew this was all fake. After I shared the fake covers to social media yesterday, a few people did reach out to tell me to consider hiring real artists, or to voice their disappointment and let me know they were unfollowing me!
Rest assured, dear readers, that I would NEVER use harmful AI “art” for the GNP in ANY capacity. 🤮
The renders are hilariously awful (and intentionally so, since this was supposed to be a joke), but AI generators are getting better and smarter. Some of them can produce art much better than this, and some can write flawless marketing copy or original stories. Their rise is threatening the lives and careers of creators everywhere, including myself, as writing is both my hobby AND (outside of the GNP) my livelihood.
The Godzilla/kaiju community is bursting with some of the most talented ACTUAL HUMAN artists you’ll ever meet. Please pay and support them. They deserve it. This AI crap can pound sand.
That said, I hope the post gave you a laugh! Some of these images are truly hysterical (I think the Steve Martin Report cover is the winner), and I had way too much fun coming up with super-serious descriptions for each. I also left in typos intentionally, and threw in a few subtle “mistakes” just for fun (like including Terror of Mechagodzilla, even though its GNP Novelization hasn’t been started yet).
As with every GNP April Fools Day prank, I’ll leave the post below archived for posterity. Just don’t expect those horrible covers to show up as actual covers on the GNP website anytime soon. 😉
Take care, everyone! And, at long last, happy April 2nd! Whew!
Happy Saturday, readers! Strap in, because I have a big announcement to make!
For the last five years, the Godzilla Novelization Project has lacked one crucial ingredient that any good book needs: actual book covers.
Well, that’s finally about to change!
Thanks to the magic of AI, I’m thrilled to announce that every GNP novel now has gorgeous, hi-res cover art, rendered with stunning accuracy and mind-blowing visual fidelity. (Plus, I didn’t have to pay real human artists a lick o’ money! What fun!)
Take a look through the gallery below and feast your eyes on these true artistic wonders!
The process was simple: I just typed the name of each movie along with the words “book cover” into the prompt and voila! Free masterpieces. I think the remarkable work seen on this new cover for my Godzilla (1954) novelization says it all.
This is the new GNP cover for King Kong vs. Godzilla. Which one is Godzilla? Which one is Kong? Only you can decide!
Mothra vs. Godzilla is undoubtedly a masterpiece, and it’s clear that AI generators are aware of this. Otherwise, how could the free one I Googled capture the essence of the film with such stunning accuracy?
Truly a book cover worthy of the legacy of Ishiro Honda.
Ah, All Monsters Attack. The often maligned story of a young child fleeing his unhappy world to befriend the son of Godzilla and learn valuable life lessons.
But did Ichiro have tails growing out of his legs and sword?
I think we all know the answer.
The ideal book cover should be able to communicate something profound about what the reader can expect from the story and the characters behind it.
This breathtaking cover for my Godzilla vs. Hedorah novelization accomplishes that goal in spades.
I’m a big Gigan fan. Not just of the movie, but also of the character. The design has always fascinated me; I mean, who among us DOESN’T love the full silver armor plating, lack of chest saw, red face, and upsetting number of teeth that Gigan has to offer? I know I sure do.
Art is open to interpretation. I mean, if AI wants to interpret the name “Megalon” as “Jason Momoa in Yoga Pants,” then who are we to judge?
It’s art like this that reminds me of just how much I love Godzilla vs. Megalon. Happy 50th. I hope this cover does you justice.
The swan song of Ishiro Honda. The final film of the Showa era. A timeless tale of star-crossed lovers. A fantastic film with epic action and tender emotion in equal measure.
And somehow, this cover conveys it all without words. Art is truly powerful.
One of my favorite aspects of Godzilla vs. Spacegodzilla was the confusion the characters feel about which of the two titular monsters is which. Remember the part where everyone thought Godzilla was Spacegodzilla and Spacegodzilla was Godzilla? Good times.
I’ll be honest with you guys: up to this point, and despite the stunning results, I wasn’t ENTIRELY sold on the whole AI thing.
But then I saw this image.
The sheer artistic magnitude, the accuracy to the film, the unexpected number of finger tentacles… it brought a tear to my eye. And then another. Before I knew it, I was openly weeping over my smartphone.
Truly, this is art.
I love me some Kiryu, and seeing how AI rendered the Millennium Mechagodzilla was a true treat. The app truly nailed it with this one, right down to the giant orange organic eyes that Kiryu is known for. They even put Godzilla’s head on backwards, just like in the movie!
But wait… it doesn’t stop there!
I figured I’d also generate some soulless cover art for some of the short stories I’ve written, and where better to start than the tale of a cyborg who dreamed of being loved as a human.
I present to you the new cover for “Katsura’s Story.”
In 1956, one man watched as a city burned and the shadow of a prehistoric beast fell upon a terrified nation. He witnessed death and tragedy on an unprecedented scale, and lived through it all to tell his story.
I present to you the new book cover for “The Steve Martin Report.”
One insatiable hunger for the forbidden fungi of a cursed hell in the Pacific.
Behold the new cover for the GNP’s novella “Casefile: Matango.”
And last but not least, witness the terrifying backwards wings and footless horror of “Sora no Daikaiju,” a retelling of 1956’s Rodan.
Finally, a cover worthy of one of the GNP’s most popular short stories!
Expect these breathtaking examples of artistic brilliance to find a home on each novel’s main page soon!
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.