Jeong You Jeong
|Born||Jeong You Jeong|
Jeong You Jeong (The romanization preferred by the author according to LTI Korea) is a South Korean writer. Her books include Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라), a book about youths wanting to escape a mental hospital in search for freedom; Chilnyeonui bam (7년의 밤 Seven Years of Night), a book about the story of a father who was forced to become a murderer, and a boy who grows up as the son of the murderer; 28, a book about the end of the world brought about by a waterborne epidemic; and The Good Son (종의 기원 in Korean), a book that documents the inner side of a psychopathic killer.
Jeong was born 1966 in Hampyeong County, South Jeolla Province. A Catholic, she graduated from Christian Nursing College in Gwangju. She later worked as a nurse for five years and at the Health Insurance Review & Assessment Service for nine years. Her work experience formed the basis for building her realistic narratives and story structures for her novels, Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라), and Chilnyeonui bam (7년의 밤 Seven Years of Darkness).
Jeong had dreamed of becoming a writer as a child, but could not pursue it due to her mother's disapproval. Her uncle was a playwright who had died due to poverty in his early 40s, and her mother feared her daughter would meet a similar fate. Jeong is also known for her persistence in becoming a writer. She was rejected by 11 competitions in six years, and pledged to never write again if she was rejected again. She submitted Nae insaeng-ui spring camp (내 인생의 스프링캠프 My Life's Spring Camp) to the Segye Youth Literature Competition and won at age 41.
Her novel Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라) alludes to her youth. While working as an intensive care nurse in her 20s, her mother died and forced Jeong to be the family breadwinner. She has said she endured that period of her life by holding on to the hope of arriving in a warm and sunny place once her difficulty had passed. In the book, Seungmin's dream of freedom and imagining Annapurna was also the author's wish. After writing her novel 28, she went to Annapurna, and based on this experience she published the book Jeong You Jeong’s Himalaya Hwansangbanghwang (정유정의 히말라야 환상방황 Jeong You Jeong's Fantastic Wandering in the Himalayas).
Two of Jeong's novels have been made into films due to their intense narratives. Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라) was made into a film released in 2015 by director Mun Che-yong and starring Yeo Jin-goo and Lee Min-ki. Seven Years of Night (7년의 밤) was produced with Choo Chang-min as director and starring Jang Dong-gun and Ryu Seung-ryong. Her recent work The Good Son (종의 기원) has also been optioned by a film studio and is expected to be produced into a film.
Jeong's debut in the 2010s shocked the Korean literary circle.[original research?] This was because compared to fellow Korean writers that had debuted through new writer's contests or literary journals, who write works by laying out human psychology over real sentiments on life, Jeong You Jeong had actively drawn genre specific subjects into the narrative in creating a story.[original research?]
In Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라), Jeong You Jeong satirizes the whole Korean society through the setting of a mental hospital, and tells the story of two young men attempting to escape. Shoot me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라), which was selected as the winner of the ‘Segye Literature Award’, was supported by younger judges, but was not favorably praised by older judges. Because of this, it's been said that there were two secret voting sessions. Literary critic Kim Hwayoung and writer Hwang Sok-yong, the judges at the time, had said that the work had a weakness in that the story was “hard to get through in the beginning,’ but also that it “makes one have sincere doubts through the metaphor of how life goes round in circles despite constantly dreaming and attempting escape”.
Jeong's major work Seven Years of Night (7년의 밤) is structured into separate narratives of a story seven years ago, when the tragic MV Seryeong incident happened, and another in present day in which a man wandering through life and marked as a murderer's son receives news of his father's execution. The son attempts to solve the incident's mysteries. As the author says she is a fan of Hemingway, Charles Dickens and Stephen King, she uses meticulous descriptions and a narrative that stimulates tension. Writer Park Bum Shin has highly praised Jeong You Jeong as having "opened a new horizon for novels through literary sincerity, dynamic narratives, and daring appeals to the reader," and that she is a monster of Korean Literature, an "Amazon."
28 is about the end of the world brought about by a waterborne epidemic, while The Good Son (종의 기원 ) deals with the origin of evil within people.
Young adult novels
- Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라), Eunhaengnamu, 2009, ISBN 9788956602998.
- Chilnyeonui bam (7년의 밤 Seven Years of Darkness), Eunhaengnamu, 2011.
- 28, Eunhaengnamu, 2013, ISBN 9788956607030.
- Jong-ui Giwon (종의 기원 The Good Son in English), Eunhaengnamu, 2016, ISBN 9788956609959.
- Jeong You Jeong's Himalaya Hwansangbanghwang (정유정의 히말라야 환상방황 Jeong You Jeong's Fantastic Wandering in the Himalayas), Eunhaengnamu, 2014, ISBN 9788956607726.
- The Good Son (English)
- Les nuits de sept ans (French)
- Sieben Jahre Nacht (German)
- 28天 (Chinese)
- 7 năm bóng tối (Vietnamese) & others
- 2007 1st Segye Youth Literature Competition for Nae insaeng-ui spring camp (내 인생의 스프링캠프 My Life's Spring Camp)
- 2009 5th Segye Literature Prize for Shoot Me in the Heart (내 심장을 쏴라)
- "정유정 | Digital Library of Korean Literature (LTI Korea)". library.klti.or.kr. Retrieved 2018-01-03.
- "Readers Rave at New Novel from Author Yu-Jeong Jeong | Be Korea-savvy". koreabizwire.com. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
- "28 by Jeong You Jeong | Korean Literature Now". koreanliteraturenow.com. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
- "Seven Years of Darkness by Jeong You Jeong | Korean Literature Now". koreanliteraturenow.com. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
- ""괴물 작가라고? 나는 인간이 궁금하다"". www.womennews.co.kr. Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "소설 '종의 기원' 정유정 작가 인터뷰". 8 July 2016. Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "장동건×류승룡 영화 '7년의 밤' 크랭크업…2017년 개봉 : 스포츠동아". Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- 임미나 (11 August 2016). "정유정 소설 '종의 기원' 영화로 만들어진다". Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "Segye Ilbo". Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "Segye Ilbo". Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "현장취재로 메운 원고지 2000장의 힘… '7년의 밤'". news.kmib.co.kr. Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "7년 전 그 밤은 아직도 끝나지 않았다. : 뉴스 : 동아닷컴". 5 April 2011. Retrieved 10 July 2017.
- "정유정 | Digital Library of Korean Literature (LTI Korea)". library.klti.or.kr. Retrieved 2017-11-27.
- Kim, Yunyeong, “An Author That Sees Into the Infinite Hell”, Literature and Practice, Fall 2013.
- O, Hyejin, “The Potential and the Outlook of Thriller Novels”, The Studies of Korean Literature, 2014
- Jeon, Seonguk, “Insights on the ‘End of the World’ and the Typology of Its Narratives – The Narrative of Disasters and the Apocalypse in Korean Novels After the 2000s", Dongnam Journal of Korean Language ＆ Literature, 2014.
- O, Hyejin, “The Ubiquity of Disasters Without Escape, A Narrative of Fear and Unrest”, The Studies of Korean Literature, 2015
- Interview: I Want to Write Novels With All the Intrigue of a Thriller
- Book excerpt: 28
- Book trailer: Seven Years of Darkness
- Book review: Seven Years of Darkness
- Essay: I Dream of Fire, Always
- [Chilnyeonui bam (7년의 밤 Seven Years of Darkness)] A Meeting with Jeong You Jeong - YouTube
- Episode 127 Jeong You Jeong (The Good Son) _[tbsTV]TV Chaekbang Buksori [Jongichaek]w - YouTube
- [LTI Korea] 2016 Seoul International Writers' Festival: Book Reading - YouTube
- [LTI Korea] Book Trailer: Seven Years of Darkness by Jeong You Jeong - YouTube