I've finally packed all my bags and I believe I'm ready to go: one giant suitcase and a backpack. I realized that the best piece of advice I've received was to pack your bags half empty. That's exactly what I did. I have room in my giant suitcase and have stowed away another duffel bag.
Unfortunately, things don't always turn out so easily. The suitcase arrangement above was my original plan. Turns out, United Airlines only allows a maximum weight of 50 lbs. per bag when traveling from the US to Korea. After weighing my giant suitcase, I found that it weighed close to 65 lbs. Clearly I had gone over the weigh limit. And not wanting to be charged an extra 230000 KRW (approx 200 USD) for being over the limit, I moved all my stuff from one suitcase to two smaller ones. While it'll be more of a hassle to carry around, I won't be short $200.
Lesson learned: check the weight of your bags before checking in. I'll be in the air for a total of about 12 hours. Maybe I can finish Crime and Punishment.