Mark James Russell is writer based in Seoul, South Korea. He first came to Korea, after much wandering and wasting of time, in 1996. Through a series of happy accidents, he soon became a journalist, specializing in media and popular culture (although also writing about science, economics, politics and many other subjects), with a focus on Korea (although also writing about Mongolia, Japan, and the rest of Asia).
Marks’s latest book is a new edition of Pop Goes Korea: Behind the Revolution in Movies, Music and Internet Culture, examining the amazing changes that transformed Korea’s popular culture and entertainment industry from the 1990s to the 2000s. Originally published by Stone Bridge Press in 2009, this new edition features more than 10,000 words of updates and new contents, updating how Korean pop culture has continued to change and thrive. You can buy the 2nd edition of Pop Goes Korea as an ebook at Amazon.
He also wrote the fantasy novel Young-hee and the Pullocho (Tuttle Books, 2015), the story of a girl who travels to a world of Korean folklore, magic and tradition to save her little brother. You can buy it at Amazon and other bookstores.
In 2014, Mark also published K-Pop Now! The Korean Music Revolution (Tuttle Books, 2014), a fun and flashy look at Korean pop music and the culture that created it.
Mark’s articles have appeared in the New York Times, Newsweek, the Wall Street Journal, Science, The Milken Review, The Hollywood Reporter, Billboard, and Television Asia and many other publications. You can find links to some of his more major stories here. He’s also given lectures about Korean pop culture in the United States, Europe and Asia and been quoted extensively in media outlets around the world.
In addition, Mark spent several years developing and producing several documentaries about Korean pop culture and history. And he founded the website the Korea Gig Guide, looking at the best music Korea has to offer (although the site is pretty much dormant now, the Facebook page lives on).
Mark also apologizes for writing pompously and in the third person.
You can reach Mark by email: koreawriter [at] gmail [dot] com