Mr. Miller arrived in Japan in 1978 after earning a master’s degree in music performance (trombone) from the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago. After working at a translation agency and a financial PR agency, he launched the editorial-design firm Lapisworks with graphic designer Kudo Taeko in 1990. Lapisworks has produced a vast array of materials for corporate PR and handled the translation and design of several books of poetry and nonfiction. Taction, Mr. Miller’s translation of calligrapher Ishikawa Kyuyoh’s history of calligraphy, earned special recognition in 2011 from the Japan Society of Translators.
In October 2011, Mr. Miller plunged into what would be six months of nearly full-time involvement in the Olympus Scandal. His good friend Michael Woodford, president of Olympus Corporation, discovered massive financial fraud at the company and ultimately lost his job for calling attention to the problem. As he embarked on a (ultimately unsuccessful) campaign to win reinstatement, Mr. Miller handled media relations and interpreting duties.
Mr. Miller is presently working on several projects: the English translation of a work by the poet Fujiwara Akiko, a Japanese book about the ceramic artist Abe Anjin, and an annotated English translation of a monumental work by the thirteenth-century Japanese Buddhist monk Eihei Dogen, Shobo Genzo. Having taken Buddhist vows in 2009, he is a self-styled “monk in training, eternally in training, never to amount to anything.”