Wood expert Kim Min-sik’s book “The Time of Wood” was selected as the winner of this year’s Green Literature Award. Photo courtesy of the Naechon

‘The Time of Tree’ picked as the best book by Korea Forest Service

The Korea Forest Service (KFS) announced last week that it had picked “The Time of Tree” by wood expert Kim Min-sik as the winner of the Green Literature Award for this year.

Kim will receive the prestigious annual prize on Oct. 19 at the office of a KFS affiliate located in Seoul.

A total of 147 novels, poets, and essays competed to win the award this year. Up to six made it to the final six lists, and “The Time of Tree” topped the podium _ reviewers unanimously chose the book.

The KFS said that Kim’s book combines the author’s rich knowledge of trees and respect for life with his deep understanding of the humanities.

Published in 2019, “The Time of Tree” came up with a series of interesting stories of various trees across the ages and in many countries of the world.

“I started writing this book as I contributed to a media outlet,” Kim said. “I hope my stories would help our carpenters, architects, designers, and ordinary people have better viewpoints on trees.”

As a dealer and consultant, Kim has worked in the wood trading business for the past four decades. Currently, he leads the Naechon woodworking shop in Hongcheon, some 80 kilometers west of Seoul.

The Naechon shop builds wooden houses and sells hand-crafted wooden furniture, on top of providing consultations.

The state-run KFS introduced the Green Literature Award in 2012 to encourage people’s interest in forests and our natural environments.

“The Green Literature Award has successfully drawn the interests of people on forest thanks to the brisk participation of literary writers,” a KFS official said.

“We will not spare our efforts to promote various cultures related to the forests by picking other outstanding literary work down the road.”

The KFS was founded in early 1967 to take charge of managing the country’s mountains and forests. It has tried to restore the country’s forests over the past half a century.