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Students learn to collect urban stories and edit local magazines from Editor-in-Chief of "Pork Ball Soup" Chun-Wei Wu


(Report by student journalist) The Department of Chinese Literature held a one-day editorial workshop, inviting the winner of the 44th Golden Tripod Award for Publications in the magazine category – Chun-Wei Wu to lead the students to learn how to edit local magazines and find stories in the city together.

Chun-Wei Wu – the co-founder of “CitiLens" and the Editor-in-Chief of a local magazine "Pork Ball Soup" reflected on her involvement in the founding of the “Pork Ball Soup” and expressed her hope that by accumulating everyday life stories, local residents would realize that there is a great deal of cultural content in their daily lives that they should be proud of, as it contributes to the preservation of traditional culture and architecture. Knowledge of local cultural stories is essential for anyone who wants to take stock of culture and convert into a magazine format. Wu emphasized that activists must systematically collect and store relevant materials through field surveys and interviews and try to convert and add value to the city's stories through various media to bring them closer to the citizens and create a connection between both. She summarized this as “stocktaking, collection, storage, extraction, and use" of culture.

“How should authors of local magazines establish and maintain connections with the local environment?” Chun-Wei Wu said that it is important to use the local space to mingle with local residents, let them reach out to themselves, and gradually build up mutual trust. She took the Sizihwan area in Kaohsiung as an example, with many unique old buildings in Hamasen and the local customs and distinctive style of the old area of Yancheng. Field survey and interviews and sharpening one’s senses is a way to touch people’s hearts and make interesting things happen.

“I hope to have more opportunities to practice that!”, said Hsing-Hsiu Cha, a senior of the Department of Chinese Literature participating in the workshop. If she has a chance to edit a local magazine in the future, she would like to start from the topic of cuisine, as she believes food is the best topic to attract readers. She would interview an ice cream shop, Wan Bing Maru Hama, to learn more about the choice of opening the store, the development of innovative flavors, and the idea process, and wants to start with the Gushan market near the University and interview local restaurants with a long history and publish their stories.

Chair of the Department of Chinese Literature Chia-Lun Tu pointed out that editing a local magazine requires a lot of enthusiasm and perseverance. In addition to the language and writing skills – the flagship skills of her Department, it also requires the editor to identify with the local area and to have communication skills to actually give back to the local area and promote local creativity. She said that in addition to professional courses, the Department of Chinese Literature launched a series of intensive workshops for students to learn practical knowledge and skills needed in the workplace, such as advertising or photography and editing, and further produce and enrich related works and accumulate concrete experience and results, which will benefit them in their future careers.

(Edited by Public Affairs Division)
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