Did you know Ice Fantasy was written by a 19-year-old?
A Chinese idiom says "water and fire cannot co-exist," and the eternal conflict of the two forces of nature is never reflected more powerfully than as depicted in the battles of the Ice and Fire tribes in new drama Ice Fantasy, starring Feng Shao Feng and Victoria Song. The original story arrived 14 years ago from a writer who creatively fused elements from Chinese Taoist mythology and Wu Xia legends, where immortals fought among themselves and interacted with mortals on Earth, combined with Eastern influences of reincarnation and retribution. Would you believe that charismatic young writer Guo Jingming was only 19 years old when he first published Ice Fantasy?
Born in the Sichuan province of China, Guo Jingming started writing when he was young. Even in childhood, his parents (an engineer and a bank clerk) supported his seemingly insatiable thirst for reading by buying him more and more books to read, in particular, many Wu Xia classics written by such masters as Jing Yong and Gu Long.
When he entered elementary school, he expanding his interest into writing. At 14, he published his first poem titled "Loneliness" in a national magazine. Although he was only paid 10 yuan (or 1.5 USD), it was a meaningful reward and motivation for the burgeoning writer, who continued to hone his writing skills by participating in writing contests.
In 2002, Guo Jingming first published Ice Fantasy (Chinese title 幻城 is literally "City of Fantasy") as a short story and received popular reception. He was only 19. He then expanded the story into a novel, which became a runaway bestseller, selling over 500,000 copies within just a few months. Anime versions of Ice Fantasy were also published to great popularity. Guo's writing style is praised as lyrical, surreal, and sophisticated in a story that is considered something never-before-seen in modern Chinese novels.
In 2006, the 23-year-old writer became the youngest member in China's Writer Association. By this time, Guo Jingming had dropped out of Shanghai University, opened his own writers' studio, and continued to write popular novels. He was also listed #92 in the 2005 Forbes list of Chinese celebrities.
His biggest achievements were still to come.
Today, Guo is not only praised as one of the most representative of China's writers of young adult fiction that spans from romance to science fiction, he has also branched out to be a screenwriter, film director, and successful entrepreneur. He wrote and directed the movies Tiny Times, Tiny Times 2, and Tiny Times 3, all based on his novels. Needless to say, he has also become very wealthy. He is ranked in the top among a list of richest writers in China based on royalties. He is also the CEO of his publishing company, which is invested in by China's famous media company Huace Film & TV.
In Ice Fantasy, Guo Jingming is seeing his imagination transformed into a vivid and thrilling epic. He is also the art director for the visually stunning drama.
As a writer, it certainly gives me the pleasure to write about another writer, albeit one that I cannot fathom to compare with and can only admire from afar. At the ripe old age of 33 now, Guo Jingming has accomplished a fantastic career, and it appears that his future is still shining super bright with more ambitious projects to come. His dual excellence in creativity and business acumen will certainly continue to take him far, and hopefully, the readers and viewers will also continue to enjoy the fruits of his work.
Ice Fantasy stars Feng Shao Feng (Prince of Lan Ling) and f(x)'s Victoria Song as lovers caught in the battles between the Ice and Fire tribes. The new drama is on-air on DramaFever with 6 episodes in the first week, followed by 4 episodes each week.
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