OPB: Would you please introduce yourself to your readers abroad?
SK: My name is Shinogi Kazanami. I work at a company and write books.
OPB: What inspired The New Gate? How did you begin writing it?
SK: When I first started writing, stories where modern humans were transported and reincarnated into fantasy worlds, and stories like the movie Avatar, where humans could move game characters as if they were their own bodies in VRMMORPG worlds, were becoming popular. I thought these concepts were interesting and read many examples of this type of work. Suddenly, it came to me that it would be interesting to combine these two concepts and that is how it all started.
OPB: When did you first decide to become a writer?
SK: For me, I didn’t begin writing because I had decided to become a writer. I didn’t start by making a plan that said if I wrote a book it would make me a writer. For me, the correct way to go about it was to use my idea as a base and then just continue to write, connecting my thoughts from there. I began to write seriously in the spring of 2012.
OPB: Outside of writing, do you have other interests or hobbies that you explore in your daily life?
SK: Recently, for a change of pace, I like to go road biking with no particular destination in mind, just aimlessly wandering wherever the road may take me. Other than that, I like gaming and reading books.
OPB: What is your favorite MMORPG to play? Do you find inspiration from the games you play?
SK: My favorite MMORPG is Ragnarok Online. I played that with my friends a lot when I was in school. I have often been inspired by games that I’ve played. I make note of cool character moves, beautiful weapons, armor, and monsters that I hadn’t thought of before.
OPB: Do you have a message you’d like to send to your readers abroad?
SK: It’s been eight years since I first started writing, but the story of Shin and his world still has a long way to go. He will meet new people and say goodbye to others, and fight new, powerful enemies. There is still a lot of ground I would like to cover. But it would make me happy if we could see the conclusion to Shin’s tale together.