I wish I could remember the very first horror movie I ever saw was. I cannot, sadly, but it was always around in my house. My dad was a big fan of horror movies and I am sure we watched the old Universal horror movies, but what I really remember seeing with dad were the Japanese kaiju movies.
You know the ones. Godzilla, and Gamera, and King Kong and all of those crazy giant creatures that fly around and repeatedly destroy Tokyo and other cities within Japan. Now, you may be thinking about the sillier Godzilla movies that came later, but when you watch that first movie, the big guy is pretty freaking scary.
These movies were always about more than they appeared. Godzilla was Japan's way of confronting the fact that two atomic bombs were dropped on their country during World War Two. Godzilla came to life when the U.S. tested their atomic weaponry in the Pacific after the war and represented the destructive power of the atom.
Eventually I found other horror movies, of course. I suppose one of the first was the broadcast TV version of JAWS. I was already obsessed with the movie, and the book, even though I had not seen it nor read it. I was in love with sharks, and the movie just showed me how awesome it was. Soon after that, we had a VCR and then there were video rental stores and the string of horror movies started. I watched most of them with my dad and it was great.
But I never forgot those kaiju movies. I loved them, even the goofier ones that popped up. I loved the weird rubber suits and miniatures being stepped on. As movie effects became better, we've had more of those movies and I have loved them all.
So, I always knew I wanted to write a kaiju story. For years, I had the thought that the Piasa Bird I had seen in Alton, IL, would be a novel. Only when I combined my love of kaiju stories and my love of JAWS, did the story really click in my brain.
There are stories of dragons and monsters going back many centuries, in cultures all over the world. So, the kaiju stories have been around for a long, long time. I have been fascinated by those, and the more modern stories of cryptids, ever since. I love the idea of there being monsters that we have not discovered lurking all over the place.
Answering the question then, is DEVOURED a kaiju story? In my mind, it is. It's an American kaiju story based loosely on Native American legends. If you love those kinds of stories, it has all the hallmarks. An ancient creature awakens because of a modern event, and then the creature starts out small and then it proceeds to attack a major city.
I am proud of the work I did here. I hope you love it as much as I loved writing it. Be sure to check out DEVOURED in print or Kindle editions at Amazon.