Spring has bloomed and so have our semester at KAIST. Despite having been only four weeks into the semester, a cycle seems to have already formulated: wake up to an alarm (only to hit the snooze button), rush to classes without having to look at the schedule, and pour over homework due the next day. Of course, this does not do justice in describing the entirety of our lives, but it does bring on a sad smile of recognition and reluctant agreement. For those who are experiencing a seeping sensation of depression and sluggish wear brought on by a routinely life, we need to feel alive again by making changes to regain the control we lost (or take a visit to our new psychiatrist at the Stress Clinic! - see page 13).
And this change is being implemented by The KAIST Herald as well - to find that renewed enthusiasm in both writing and reading. In the International section (page 7), a cartoon has been included to provide a helping hand to international students in learning and understanding Korean slang or etiquette that the typical Korean university students use (and actually is surprisingly hard to learn or even approach as it is not “proper” Korean language - as told by our very own international reporter) to further immerse into the Korean culture.
In the Society section (page 10), a new series has begun in search for the meaning of journalism to our reporters and is expected to provide insight to the character and principles of each reporter. The series, “What I Wish We Had Known While We Were Writing,” disregarding the sheer number of W’s, is thought-provoking and makes me eager to project my opinions on the subject as well.
What I wish I knew when we were writing is that to write, one must be confident. There is no such thing as perfect writing, and all writing inevitably will be subjected to some form of critique and judging. I used to fear that critique, and I let that critique force me down to the feeling of inferiority and acceptance. In fact, back in my high school days, I thought I was a terrible writer and that the last thing I would pursue would be journalism, or any type of writing for that matter. But now as the editor, I realize what it means to make a critique. For me, a good writing is not having perfect grammar or structure - it is the message and the voice of the writer. A critique can be no more than a reflection of what and how I learned writing to be, but if I hear and become persuaded by the author’s voice, to me that is good writing. So to all, you need to summon courage and defeat the critique. Have confidence in your thoughts and beliefs, and learn the methods to convey them in the best manner possible. Argue if you must or learn from your mistakes, but do not feel like you do not deserve to write and keep that voice inside your writings alive. Only then can you proceed to be the writer you first envisioned yourself as.