OWL Magazine Korea

“Lee Wae soo’s Survival Guide: Haak Haak”

Despite being an author who had already become a legend, Lee Wae soo actively engaged with the younger generation, even creating new slang terms used by them. He had a unique vibe, despite his advanced age, and was known for his ability to communicate with and understand the younger generation.

Often referred to as a “guru,” Lee Wae soo embraced this image himself, even appearing on a popular TV show as a guru and introducing himself as such. He once said, “I have certain behaviors that I consider guru-like. In Korea, people think doing things like writing, drawing, or making music is a hardship. It’s about being cold and hungry. But for 30 years, I’ve been writing without letting my wife and children go hungry. That’s the ultimate guru behavior.”

“Lee Wae soo’s Survival Guide: Haak Haak”

Lee Wae soo was known for his guru-like image, yet he also effectively communicated with the modern generation, often leading trends with his essays.

In particular, when this book was first published in 2008, it caused quite a stir as it used the term “Haak Haak,” which was popular on the internet at the time, as its title.

Furthermore, the vocabulary and expressions used in the book were not the typical youthful slang traditionally used by writers, but rather internet slang and neologisms, which resonated with readers, though it also sparked some controversy.

“Lee Wae soo: A Writer Who Comforts the Soul”

Even aside from these aspects, Lee Wae soo’s writing has a comforting effect on readers, providing both relaxation and entertainment. While not uproariously funny, his writing elicits a chuckle here and there.

The content itself covers a wide range of topics. Compiled from various fleeting thoughts accumulated over time, his concise yet impactful writing style gives the impression of a collection of reflections. Sometimes he complains about the world, sometimes he gives hope, and sometimes he lays bare his loneliness. His writing delves into the complex and multifaceted emotions of humanity.

“If you don’t know the flavor of language, you can’t create the flavor of language.”

The above quote is particularly memorable. Just as someone who has tasted meat can cook it well, perhaps only those who have read extensively can write eloquently.

Thanks to Lee Wae soo’s writing, I’ve developed a habit of reading and digesting various texts whenever I have the time. Even as I write this, I’m continuing that process.

I don’t just read the words; I try to savor them as much as possible. Just as you need to chew meat to fully appreciate its flavor.

This book offers a unique perspective on the world through the eyes of a novelist. While reading the works of others, I often find myself marveling at the diverse expressions and imaginative metaphors. In particular, the precise yet creative descriptions, or the innovative metaphors, often lead me to ponder.

“The turtle with a dream never tires.”

Another quote from another book, “The turtle with a dream never tires,” resonates with me as well. Slowly but steadily, moving at your own pace towards your goals is important. There’s no need to rush or compare yourself to others. Just take each step calmly and steadily toward your destination.

Just as Lee Wae soo had his own survival tactics, I too will develop my own.

Many of Lee Wae soo’s writings exude a human scent, leaving me feeling warm and fuzzy inside. Despite being a contemporary writer, his steady communication with the public gives off a modest vibe. From this, I conclude that literature is not fixed or stagnant, but rather continuously evolves and communicates with the times.

“Lee Wae soo’s Survival Guide: Haak Haak”

  • Author: Lee Wae soo
  • Publication Date: March 30, 2008
  • ISBN13: 9788973379507
  • Publisher: Happy Books
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