I’m thinking I should start a reference page for all the Korean-SF goodness I’ve been coming across, and just link my post series from there.
For those living in Seoul and interested in seeing SF films with other SF enthusiasts, editor/critic/translator Park Sang-Jun has teamed up with the proprietor of a newly-relocated cinema in Shinchon to put together Cinema Odyssey an SF & Fantasy film club that will meet periodically to view screenings of SF films. (That link is the Naver cafe, so you need to be logged into Naver to access it.) I met with Park on Friday just before the movie screening and discovered that besides his role at the SF imprint Omelas, he is none other than the proprietor of the Seoul SF Archive that put on the display of Korean-language SF books from the last century in 2007. And this was also the same person who edited the early edition (or editions?) of Fantastique. I’m getting the impression he’s a kind of one-man dynamo in terms of promoting SF in Korea, and he also happens to be a very interesting guy, so it was good to sit down and talk with him.
The first Cinema Odyssey screening was Altered States, which was fun — I’d never seen it before, in fact. At the screening, I met a Korean SF author named Park Sung Hwan (and his lovely wife). Mr. Park’s well-known short story “레디메이드 보살” (“Readymade Bodhisattva”) was included in this 2004 anthology of Korean short SF stories.
In addition, Mr. Park’s recent comment here on my site followed up a comment of his on Friday about remembering Crossroads having published English-language translations of its SF stories back in the old days. I’ve mentioned before Crossroads before, but I hadn’t come across the English versions of the stories, much to my chagrin… but, hey, believe it or not, they’re there! There’s a huge cache of Korean SF in translation there. I can’t vouch for quality, as I haven’t yet had a chance to look around, and for some reason it’s not clearly visible from the front page, but there’s a ton of it (multiple pages of links) accessible from here, including the very story I had long contemplated translating, 대리전 by Djuna. Here that story is, titled, in English, “Proxy War.” It’s notable for being set in what is very close to my neighborhood!