AKMU’s Lee Chanhyuk Reveals The Inspiration Behind His Best-Selling Debut Novel, And It Might Surprise You

The inspiration behind it will have you either relating with him, or in splits!

AKMU‘s Lee Chanhyuk revealed the inspiration behind his debut best-selling novel, “Fish Meets Water”!

On the latest episode of K-Pop Lyrics Helper, fellow YG Entertainment labelmate WINNER‘s Kang Seungyoon and guitarist Kim Tae Won analyzed the lyrics of AKMU’s 2019 song, “Fish In The Water”.

As part of the show, the two called up the original lyricist and composer of the song, none other than Chanhyuk himself!

Seungyoon then addressed his debut novel, and asked him what inspired him to write the book.

What led you to write the novel “Fish In The Water”?


Chanhyuk revealed that the idea for the book came about as a result of frustration while the sibling-duo was preparing for the release of their third full-album in 2019, titled Sailing.

As you know, when you write your songs and are about to release your album, the A&R side asks for song descriptions. One day, I found myself…really hating doing that. Because for me, writing a song is a way to express how I feel in a poetic way.

And I didn’t like having to explain that.


Chanhyuk further elaborated on what spurred him on to finally release all of his feelings in his own way into a book.

I have my own way to explain things. And it felt like I had to change that into something ordinary. So, I thought, “If I need a tool to help other people understand, I’m going to write something long”, and that became a book.


Both Kim Tae Won and Seungyoon expressed how cool they thought this side of Chanhyuk was!

So cool!


In September of 2019, Lee Chanhyuk released his first novel titled “Fish Meets Water” a day after the group’s comeback with Sailing. The novel is connected to the album, and is about Chanhyuk’s insights with respect to life values and perspective on the arts. Upon its release, the book instantly became a hit, and topped many bestsellers’ lists in Korea!

You can watch Chanhyuk explain how the idea of writing “Fish Meets Water” arose from the 8:20 mark here!