From 1984-87, I lived and worked as a journalist in Seoul, though I returned to Wisconsin from May 1985 to February 1986. When I returned to Korea, I took on two jobs in journalism-related work, both arranged by the same publisher. I also met some women that would play key roles in my life.

Before I’d left Yonhap in Spring 1985, I assisted in application processes for two International Desk reporters – Mr. Kim Chang-Hoe (who soon interned for the Baltimore Sun), and Jo Jae-Pil (who’d taught Korean to David Johns and me, and who soon attended graduate school at the University of Michigan). I wrote and/or re-wrote their letters and statements of purpose; and I wrote my own letter of recommendation for each, too.

Image via Wikipedia

     I returned to Wisconsin in May 1985, to recharge my energy, and get feeling better. After my health had improved later that year, while I interned for the La Crosse County Historical Society, I sent two letters to Mr. Kim Kyong-Hoe, publisher of Business Korea in Seoul, in the hope of landing a job with his organization. Mr. Kim was one of the top English-language publishers in Korea; he’d graduated several years before from Korea’s Sogang University,  Korea’s top Catholic school. He’d been a sponsor of Ms. Kim Young-Im’s Pine Hill photo-show, and she’d introduced me to him in that spring. Both my letters were returned to me, marked undeliverable.

     I wrote Ms. Kim next, and she sent me the correct address for Mr. Kim. I wrote him, and he wrote a letter to me, stating he had not one job for me, but two. I would work for him 30 hours a week at Business Korea; and I would work three 3-hour shifts each week for the Korea Trade Promotion Corporation (KOTRA). Both jobs would entail copy-editing, and the KOTRA job also involved speech-memo writing, while the Business Korea job would also include reporting. In fact, I was named chief copy editor and reporter for Mr. Kim’s magazine.

     I prepared my passport and visa, but four days before I was scheduled to board my plane, my back went out royally. I’d never been to a chiropractor before, but my mom had. She arranged an appointment; I went, and felt better almost immediately. I boarded my plane on-time, and arrived in Seoul in decent shape.

Liked it
Leave a Comment
comments powered by Disqus

Hi there!

Hello! Welcome to Authspot, the spot for creative writing.
Read some stories and poems, and be sure to subscribe to our feed!

Find the Spot