“Do one thing every day that scares you.”
여러분 메리 크리스마스!
Back in the summer, I decided that rather than waiting until I had a ‘firm grasp on Korean’ – whatever that means – I was going to start writing short stories and not let my ignorance of vocabulary and grammar or my fear of imperfection stop me. I bought a cute little notebook that fit into my pocket and tried to write at least one little story each day.
My cousin and I went to G-Dragon’s Peaceminusone exhibit the first week that I was back in Korea and that evening, as we sat on the second floor of a cafe near Yonsei University, we decided to create. She’s an amazing artist; I have a passion for writing. Inspired by the creativity we saw at the exhibit, we decided we wanted to not just consume but produce. I wrote, she sketched.
I got to around thirty this past summer. Thirty very short, very simple, flaw-filled stories. Most of them reached perhaps a single tiny page, and a few were scribbled across more than one page. I tried to write with varied characters and plots, and found that it was quite the challenge.
It can be hard enough to write a good story when you have time and space and fluency to wax eloquently, but when you’re confined, you have to be far more creative.
I loved it. I love my little foolish tales, for all their mistakes and awkwardness. Per the suggestion of one of my Korean friends, I made an Instagram account called Green Tea Girl in Korean to post them to, but I all but forgot about it until recently. I’ll start posting them there again, but I’m also going to share them here.
훌륭한 형님 | 15.6.30 — "야, 이놈아 진짜-" 어둡고 늦은 밤에 남자들 4명이 한강의 강둑에 서 있었다. 그들의 발 밑에 의식을 잃은 남자가 누워 있었다. "이제 이 자식 숨을 쉬지, 뭐….형님, 너무 화가나지마세요." "내가 이 자식 몇 번 말했는데도!" "형님…" 갑자기 강둑에 누워 있는 남자가 정신을 들었다. 그 형이 즉시 무릎을 꿇었다. "무슨 일이야, 이 자식아. 어디 다친 거 없어? 이 형 얼마나 걱정됐는데…" "형님…" "머-머-뭐?! 내가 뭐?" "형님 보고 싶었어요." "이 놈아." 그 형은 다른 남자에게 시켰다. "빨리 차 데리고 와!" "형님…" "왜." "제가…죽을 것 같아요?" 울음을 참으면서 그 형이 대답했다. "아니. 형이 죽을 때까지 네가 죽지 못해! 알았어?" "예, 형님…" "이 자식아."
Do you see glaring errors? Little mistakes? Please do let me know. I may never do anything with them besides share them with my readers, but isn’t that all that matters – sharing what I’ve created, however small, with others. I hope you enjoy them, and I hope you feel inspired to do your own creative works.
In my mind, creating is the best way to resolve problems of the heart and mind, because you can take what constitutes the problem and reshape it into something that allows you to confront – or at least acknowledge – the problem itself.
감사합니다, and I hope you enjoy my little stories. I’ll link to them here once I begin posting them.
P.S. The formatting was lost in the Instagram post, but here’s the story titled 훌륭한 형님:
“야, 이놈아 진짜-“
어둡고 늦은 밤에 남자들 4명이 한강의 강둑에 서 있었다. 그들의 발 밑에 의식을 잃은 남자가 누워 있었다.
“이제 이 자식 숨을 쉬지, 뭐….형님, 너무 화가나지마세요.”
“내가 이 자식 몇 번 말했는데도!”
“형님…” 갑자기 강둑에 누워 있는 남자가 정신을 들었다. 그 형이 즉시 무릎을 꿇었다.
“무슨 일이야, 이 자식아. 어디 다친 거 없어? 이 형 얼마나 걱정됐는데…”
“머-머-뭐?! 내가 뭐?”
“형님 보고 싶었어요.”
“이 놈아.” 그 형은 다른 남자에게 시켰다.
“빨리 차 데리고 와!”
“제가…죽을 것 같아요?”
울음을 참으면서 그 형이 대답했다. “아니. 형이 죽을 때까지 네가 죽지 못해! 알았어?”