I watched “Up In the Air” with George Clooney last night, and it’s still on my mind. It packs quite a punch. I was expecting a wry, seriocomic look at the American economic problems along with George Clooney doing his thing (i.e. basically playing his own persona to perfection like he does in every other movie). That’s pretty much what I got, but the story has some real, unexpected heart to it, and it really stays with you.
I’ve been listening to a band called the Raveonettes who make ethereal, wispy alt-music. I have no idea where they’re from or what they look like, but they’re excellent. But my favorite song right now is “Run” by the Korean hip-hop (no, that is not an oxymoron) group Epik High. It’s perfect workout music. I don’t know a whole lot about Epik High, but I heard that one of the members–Tablo–studied creative writing at Stanford and had a short story collection recently published here in Korea. I picked up the English edition, and I’m only two stories in, but I’m quite impressed; the dude can clearly write. Short stories are tricky for me; my writing tends to meander quite a bit, and short stories have to be tight with everything filled with purpose. A short story is an arrow, and a novel is more of a spiral, if that makes any sense. And like Yu-Na Kim, I like to spiral.
Speaking of my writing, I’ve finished Part One, which is basically all the lead-up before the main character heads to Korea. For the last week or so, I’ve been reading through everything and making revisions. There’s a lot of awkwardness that needs to be cleared up, along with cliches that need to be changed to truths, but overall, I can say that I’m satisfied with what I have so far. But rereading, it’s actually a lot sadder book than I thought it was while I was writing it; I’d be surprised if many happy, well-adjusted people would like it. In other words, I’m pretty much writing for myself, I think, and actually, I don’t mind that at all. I can’t imagine anything being more personal than writing, not even masturbation. Long live the lugubrious!