Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bologna Children's Book Fair Comes to Korea!

Every year, writers and illustrators from all over the world come together to Bologna, Italy to showcase their work. The Bologna Book Fair and the SCBWI Bologna Symposium are held in conjunction with each other.

And each year, Korea was the Guest of Honour. This exhibit was titled Round and Round in a Circle. As the guest of honour, the Bologna exhibit came to Seoul and our SCBWI group took a field trip out to see it!

There was so much talent at the fair. Overwhelming! My head was spinning though I'm not an artist, I was inspired.

Here's a recap of some of the fun stuff that I saw:

Past year highlights

The Chusok Harvest Moon created by Ho Jang from Korea.

Created by Igor Olenynikov from Russia

Alireza Goldouzian from Iran uses fingerprints and cut paper.

Ji-Yee Jung from Korea created an unusal illustration with fabric.

Jai-hee Han- Korea

Puss and Boots by Ayano Imai with watercolors and pencils

The End!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Olympics Addiction

I have been neglecting my blogging of late. Partly due to fast drafting my latest novel. But I have to say, the Olympics haven't been helping me out either. Who wants to write when Kim Yu-Na is performing?

We were pretty excited over here in Seoul to see Yu-Na shatter her own world record in her James Bond routine. It was said she even slowed traffic!

How about you? What is your favorite Winter Olympic sport?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Link Fest!

Lots of great stuff happening in the writing world that you don't want to miss.

Check out Shelli's blog, Market My Words all week long for some absolutely incredible prizes. (i.e. agent critiques and marketing advice!)

Then on Elana's blog, Navigating the Publishing World with a Real Splash of Life, she's having a Pay it Forward Contest with more cool agent critique rewards.

Shannon O'Donnell on her Book Dreaming blog, is giving away Elana's book and a gift card.

And if your still bored, check out my blog post on MiG Writers on how to bring multiculturalism into your writing.

Special thanks to my hubby for taking the picture. It's a palace from the Shilla Dynasty in Kyongju.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Celebrate Lunar New Year!

Happy Lunar New Year! Today, Feb. 15th is Lunar New Year here in Korea. While many of you might be celebrating Valentines's Day, at our house, we're having a dual hoiday. Lunar and Valentines.

Last year, I did a little post on the holiday, so for more details, check it out.

Here in Korea, they celebrate both the solar new year's day on Jan. 1st and the Seollal, which generally falls on the second new moon after the winter solstice.

For Lunar this year, we made the cute paper lanterns that you see in the picture. Check out this link to make one for yourself.

We also passed out Valentines to each other, too, along with lots of hugs and kisses.

And I made a Valentine for you too! I love my fellow bloggers! Click on this link to make one of your own.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Writing is Like Kimchi

If you know what kimchi is, you’re probably saying, “Huh?” For those of you who don’t know, kimchi the most famous Korean dish. There are different types of kimchi depending on the season. Baechu kimchi is the most common type and it’s made in the fall. The picture here was taken one fall when we went to a village and happened to catch the ladies making their kimchi.

Key Ingredients
You’ll often see huge groups of ladies working together, sitting on the ground amidst massive piles of cabbage. To make kimchi, cut up salted Chinese cabbage leaves and stuff them with sok (literally meaning inside), a chili paste. Other ingredients include broccoli, fruit, cucumber, or scallions.

In writing, key ingredients also prove to make delicious writing: unique characters, vivid settings, action packed plots, and a strong voice. But don’t forget to ‘cook’ with your own special ingredients by pouring your own magic into the story. They say when making kimchi, you should be able to taste the salt. When your cabbage “zings”, you’ve got the perfect balance. Same with your manuscript.

The sea salt not only adds good taste, it ferments the kimchi, too. After the kimchi is made, it needs minimal oxygen and a cool place. To make this work, Koreans put their kimchi in large pots, often in a cool place, with a tight lid to keep pressure at the top.

The same goes with your manuscript. Give you story time to ferment. Put it aside and work on something else. Later, take it out and you’ll see your manuscript in a whole new life. I just pulled out Chosen Warrior again after setting it aside for nearly a year. I knew I had some major cutting to do, but a year ago, the thought of cutting those precious words was too hard. It wasn’t so hard this time since I wasn’t as close to the work. I ended up cutting 14,000 words!

So now maybe you can see why kimchi kind of reminds me of the writing process.

And out of curiosity, have you ever eaten kimchi before?

Friday, February 5, 2010

Movie Star!

Is your manuscript a Movie Star!? I did a blog post on my trip to an elephant park and how that made me think of making my manuscript Movie Star! material. Can't you see the connection?

If not, check it out at

Debbie Ridpath Oh did the cartoon. She is brillant, isn't she?