Meeting with the Editor of Woman Sense
Meeting with the Editor of Woman Sense
  • Observer
  • 승인 2014.04.02 19:56
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When you go to a hair salon, what do you commonly look at? The magazines neatly arranged on thetable. With hair rolls in your hair, you will browse through a magazine over and over. Then how arethese magazines made? And by whom? With such questions, we met the editor-in-chief of ‘WomanSense.’ Even though there might not be a ‘Vogue girl’ magazine in your hair salon, there will be absolutely be a‘Woman Sense’ magazine. Let’s hear the story of Chang-hun Lee, the editor-in-chief of Woman Sense and aproud senior of YU.

Q) Was there any reason you started working atWoman Sense?
A) Although I majored in English Language andLiterature, I put my heart and soul into working as areporter. I spent three and a half years at the YUnewspaper press. Therefore I applied to almost all mediacompanies. However I didn’t receive any acceptance fromthem, so I prepared for interviews and jobs applicationsfor one and a half years. There was the age limitation inapplying for those companies, and I received anacceptance offer from The Yeongnam Ilbo and WomanSense when I met the age limit. Finally I chose WomanSense because they were the first to recruit me so closeto my age limit.

Q) How much effort have you put into becomingthe editor-in-chief since you entered thecompany?
A) I had my feelings hurt when a senior told me “Howcould you enter this company? You graduated from areginal university” in front of many people. After that, Imade my mind to perform all the work others couldn’t do even though it was hard to complete. When I was a youngreporter, Ki-yeong Um, an anchor for MBC, was verypopular and known for not consenting to any proposalsfrom people who wanted to interview him. However Idecided to do an interview him. At first, he refused itcompletely but I never gave up. After several rejections, heaccepted the interview at last, and everyone wassurprised. Even nowadays we sometimes meet. Sincethen I have strived to complete more works than mycolleagues. A younger colleague said, “Nobody is betterthan you. I think you will be the editor.” Maybe there is noone who has worked at two magazine companies whichcompete with each other, but I have done it.

Q) What do you do as the editor-in-chief?
A) When reporters bring ideas, a team leader checks ifthey are good and then submits them to me. Then Icategorize the selected articles into the special featuresand information articles. Also I ask the advertisers to givesupport and free sample items. If the advertisers give freesample items, I let the ads be printed on the magazine. Idecide how many supplemental items are added to thebook, and in what district the magazine is sold. I also ask the reporters to correct titles which are not suitable to the selected articles, and the position of picture. The most important thing is to select the model for the front cover.

Q) Can you explain the process of making the magazine and monthly schedule?
A) There are five reporters in the interview part and also five reporters in the living part. We also have some freelance reporters but the most articles are written by the reporters themselves. The cover is the most important so we usually cast a model several months before publishing an issue. Early in the month we interview and take photos. In the middle of month, we write the articles and complete the rest of photo works. I can receive the finished magazine on the 22nd of every month in the evening.

Q) How did you deal with complains due to the certain articles?
A) We don’t write the article using inaccurate information. We get article sources from the entertainment reporters and reflect on the facts. Therefore, if someone complains about the article, it is just to let others know about some bad things in it. However some entertainment agencies have tried to sue us. Then, we usually interview a rooky and then we make a decision to go to court or not go to court and publish a correction article.

Q) At first, I was surprised that a man is the editor-in-chief of a women’s magazine. When you need to have a woman’s sense, are there any uncomfortable moments?
A) Of course, it was hard at first due to my experience being different from the topics within a woman’s magazine. When I was a reporter, I suggested a lot of items and they were continuously filtered. Through those processes, I learned which topics were suited for women’s magazine. Also, there are monitors who are asked about current hot topics or things that people are interested in these days. I try to follow the trend.

Q) What is the hardest moment in making a magazine?
A) When there is no featured article for the cover. I can endure backbreaking work but, how can I motivate people buy the magazine without interesting information on the cover? So, to answer your questions: The hardest time is when there is no cover article. Then I sometimes grill team readers about topics saying, “Why can’t you do this?” Sometimes, I make a planned hot issue composed of articles at random.

Q) When is the most memorable moment of your campus life?
A) When I was a junior and the chief reporter at the school newspaper, I went to the Gumi Industrial Complex for a story during the summer. At that time, I went to Gumi to expose the truth about the situation at the Gumi Industrial Complex. At that time there was an activist group striking in Gumi, so the polices doubted me and they followed me back. While reporting, I had a talk with activists and but I couldn’t argue over their logic. So I thought I should defeat them with alcohol and I remember drinking a lot of alcohol. However, an academic adviser did not let me write the article and I was angry and shouted at him that I needed to write this. After that, I was on the blacklist. After taking a job interview with Woman Sense, I took a second interview as the sole candidate and they asked me about my past problems with university management. When I look back on the past, it’s an interesting memory.

Q) Do you have a something to tell student dreaming about being a magazine reporter?
A) There is a saying that if you do not get a scoop in three years of reporting, you will never get one forever. You should taste the pleasure and the sense of accomplishment. After doing it, you will understand clearly. If not, you will only give 90 percent of your effort, thinking that you tried, and give up. When you do only one thing, you should do that perfectly. It will pile up and become a career. You should have a backbone. So, you can give detail directions to subordinates and lead them.

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