Born in 1943 in Gangneung, So Young-en graduated from Gangneung Teacher Training School in 1961. She entered Konkuk University in 1963 to study English Language and Literature but left the university in 1965. Her short story, “Gyo (Bridge)” won the new writers’ contest held by the monthly journal “Sasanggye” in 1968. The following year, her story “Nawa na (I and I)” was included in the new writers’ collection of “Monthly Literature,” a literary journal. Her short story, “Meon geudae (The Distant Beloved)” won the 7th Yi Sang Literature Award in 1983, and her story “Sadariga noin chang (A Window with a Ladder)” won the 3rd Yeonam Literature Award in 1990.