Could you please share with us a little about your background and family?
I come from a middle class immigrant family in LA’s Koreatown. My mom is a voracious reader and surrounded me with fiction books from an early age. My stepfatheris a gruff Vietnam veteran who bought me non-fiction books that challenged my thinking. I have one sibling who went on to become an Ivy Leaguer and is now a dental surgeon. I read just enough to tip me into writing.
Did you always know your creative calling? How did you find your way toward it?
When I was 8 my teacher gave me a writing journal. I filled it up. Then my mom bought me a Hello Kitty diary. I filled it up too. I gravitated toward writing as a way to interpret the world and my existence. Journalism became a natural path for me.
Kindly take us through a particular project of yours that you cherish.
I love helping people find love. I apply optimization, storytelling, branding and UX to write online dating profiles for people who struggle finding matches. First I gather the elements for storytelling: I interview them about their interests and what type of person they’re looking for. This informs what kind of story I write and how they brand themselves. I fish for keywords to optimize their profile. Then I help them gather pictures that match the branding and storytelling. I write the profile using UX content compliancy. Among my success stories are a 66-year-old woman who struggled with obesity find a loving, long-term relationship; a commitment phobe who finally accepted love in their late 50s; and a shy, introverted man who had no luck matching well on his own finding a girlfriend in 3 months of using an app.
Who or what has been your inspiration in your journey of becoming a writer?
My immediate, extended family, and friends have always been fans of my writing and encouraged me to pursue a writing career. For example, I tend to visit places that make my family cringe. Over the years I've corresponded from these places. They've gone back to the emails, letters and postcards to re-read of my adventures. They've also been fans of my fiction writing and saved my published work.
When I was 8 my teacher gave me a writing journal. I filled it up. Then my mom bought me a Hello Kitty diary. I filled it up too.
How do you stay up-to-date with the latest trends & technologies in your field and how do you incorporate them into your work?
I read a lot. Not social media but trade journals, daily “papers”, tech news, books... I also follow Congressional and Senate hearings to stay on top of changes with technology.
How do you balance delivering a high-quality output with meeting tight deadlines?
I’m a former journalist. I’m trained to deliver high quality content under very tight deadlines. Deadlines help me focus and keep me on track with what’s important.
How do you balance creativity with the business side of things?
It's easy for me to compartmentalize between business and creative work.
I love helping people find love. I apply optimization, storytelling, branding and UX to write online dating profiles for people who struggle finding matches.
How many years of experience do you have? With that many years of experience in the industry, what words of wisdom would you like to give to young Creatives?
I have 20+ years of experience. Advice: Don’t aim for perfection on draft one—it will suck. Good writing happens in later drafts.