Could you tell us a few words about your background?
I’m a Scottish-Irish American from Virginia, now 23 years here in Kyoto. Part-time English teacher, private teaching and at the SDF Air Force Academy in Nara. Part-time writer and full-time drinker. Ex-marine, hippy herb salesman and worked for 12 years with NASA on the space shuttle, space telescope and Galileo programs.
When did you start writing?
I began writing when I first arrived in Kyoto in 1992. I studied East Asian Studies at university, and my ex-wife was from Kyoto.
Why have you stayed here so long?
I fell in love with Kyoto at first sight and have never spent a single boring moment here. A city perfect for bike riders, surrounded by verdant mountains; an oasis of civility in a world gone mad. Safe, no guns, no fundamentalists, with plenty of English and Irish pubs to quench my thirst. Everywhere gorgeous temples and regal shrines. And Japanese women. What more would a sane man ask for?
How about your published work?
I’m most proud of the first Ero-Samurai book in praise of Japanese women. Writing and researching about the world’s most captivating women was a joy unequalled. I don’t think anyone has written more boldly or honestly about these real ‘living treasures’ than myself.
And your future plans?
I am now working on a comprehensive book about Japanese cats, in history, culture and literature. After completing that I plan on tackling the drinking life, something along the lines of In Praise of Drink and Drunkards. They say writing should be a passion, and I write about what I love!