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Richard M. Cho


First Language(s): Korean
Second Language(s): English


Richard M. Cho is a research librarian for Humanities and Literature at the University of California, Irvine. He writes occasional book and movie reviews on the website he founded, jjjreview.com.


What was your favorite book as a child?

That book would be “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein. I believe I learned all about the elements of a great story from reading this book. Many years have passed since I read “The Giving Tree” for the first time, and now it is also my children’s favorite. This coincidence softens my heart.

Do you remember the original reason or motivation why you started writing creatively?

My first attempt at creative writing was with poetry, and I wrote poems to present to my loved ones. So I’d have to say that my original reason or motivation was “love,” but it sounds lame in retrospect. As is the case with other aspiring writers, I loved books and maybe I subconsciously thought that I wanted to contribute to literature in a certain way.

What was the most adventurous or thrilling thing you ever did/experienced?

The most thrilling thing I experienced was getting a job as a research librarian for humanities and literature at the University of California, Irvine. It was in the library at UC Irvine I fell headlong in love with literature when I was a student, and now I work here as a literature librarian.

Do you listen to music while reading or writing?

I listen to music when I eat, when I shower, when I go to sleep, etc.. So yes, I do listen to music when I read and write as well. Of course, the activity of the moment determines the kind of music I listen to. When I read and write, I turn on ambient music, that seemingly endless loop of gentle sound. I simply can’t do any tasks without music.


Flash Fiction
The Brightest One
Issue Fall '19

Short Story
The Mephisto Waltz
Issue Spring '21

Supported by:

Land Steiermark: Kultur, Europa, Außenbeziehungen
U.S. Embassy Vienna
Stadt Graz