A few things of some interest, but not worthy of entire posts.
• First, HanCinema (in a designation that is amusing to me) labels Shin Kyung-sook “the future of Korean literature.” It is just possible that there is a more nuanced take on this^^ but nuanced takes aren’t really what this article does:
[Interview : Kim Jeong-oh, Visitor] “Shin Kyung-sook is like a candle. She communicates through warm emotion”.
[Interview : Kang Seul-gi, Visitor] “Shin Kyung-sook is like a comma, a pause in life. Her words reach to your soul”.
Hmmm.. I’m not sure I’d want to be compared to a comma!
• A really interesting author response to ‘illegitimate’ translations of The Moonlight Sculptor a Korean manhwa by Heesung Nam. The work was translated three years ago, the second volume is hung up in some kind of snafu, and online folks have apparently been doing fan translations of it. The author gives limited and I guess semi-official permission for that (I wonder how Nam’s evil^^ agent thinks about this!?!?)
As of now, the Moonlight Sculptor published in US haven’t reached the break-even point. In fact, there is no commercial profit from the book. And I doubt it would ever in the future. My guess is that official translation of the following story wouldn’t happen in near future; not in three years at least. Therefore, I will not exercise my copyrights over the translated works of fifth volume of the story published in Korea. For now, I am saying that my promise will take effect until December, 2014.
Of course, the promise will stay valid under one condition; the readers translate the story with noncommercial intention and enjoy it.
If someone officially profit from the translated work by selling them over Amazon.com and such, it might make things difficult and complicated.
I love that second condition, “enjoy it!”
• Finally, for those of you interested in the competition over at the MAN Asian Literary Prize, @ConzieSays (from the “If I Had a Minute to Spare” blog) tips me off to a page that briefly discusses all the competition. About Please Look After Mom, the site says:
Please Look After Mom by Kyung-Sook Shin: Kyung-Sook Shin is something of a literary phenomenon in South Korea. Please Look After Mom (Mother outside the US) is her seventh novel, and it has sold in excess of one million copies in her homeland. Maybe the most remarkable thing about her latest offering is how she manages to fashion something so unique and soul-searching out so ordinary a conceit. So-nyo, an ailing wife and mother, disappears on the Seoul subway on a trip from the country to visit her eldest son. Her siblings and their father join together in a futile quest to find her. In the course of their search – split between the points of view of son, daughter, father and finally, So-nyo herself – they agonise over how they took her for granted, and in doing so raise the kinds of questions that can apply to us all. Most of all, it offers rare glimpses of life in rural South Korea, and asks whether the nation’s insatiable push for progress has come at a price.