100 Story Star: Oliver Phommavanh

When we asked the young editors of The Sound Of The Dark, the professional children’s author they would like to invite to contribute to the book, the answer was unanimous: Thai-Australian author and comedian Oliver Phommavanh!

Not only do they loooove his books but they saw their own diverse histories reflected in his Thai-Australian background.

And Oliver Phommavanh, being an all-round Thai-riffic guy, responded to the invitation with immediate enthusiasm and contributed a spine-chilling tale to the creepy-horror anthology. (It involves headless teddy bears but that is all we are ready to share).

Here’s Oliver’s experience of working with young editors.

What got you interested in the Early Harvest program (behind the book)?

When I was approached by 100 Story Building to contribute a story, what caught my eye was that it was a chance to work with kids who are keen writers. I’m always happy to lend my support to those who want to follow their dreams.

Normally, children of age 8-12 make your readership. What was it like to have them read your work and critique it?

It was a little scary haha, I was worried that it wouldn’t make the cut because it wasn’t spooky enough. But I’m glad they liked it.

Were you worried at all that one of the children writers might be better than you?

Not worried at all, in fact, I would be over the full moon and howl with joy. I wish Early Harvest was around when a kid, it’s a wonderful opportunity.

You normally write comic literature. What was it like to write a Creepy Horror story?

Yeah, it was definitely a challenge. I don’t read horror books often hehe, but as a writer, I’m always open to trying new things and it was definitely a lot of fun in balancing the laughs and scares in my story.

What did you learn from contributing to The Sound Of The Dark?

I learnt that there are amazing opportunities for kids who want to get published, it’s not something you have to wait until you get older. I also discovered that there’s a genre called spooky horror too, hehe.

The Sound Of The Dark is a hair-raising, bone-rattling, spine-tingling creepy horror anthology for children by children. Fifteen young editors fielded 135 stories to bring to you the best of young Australian writing today. If you’re looking to test your courage, this book is for you!

You can read more about The Sound Of The Dark here.

Launch date: 20 November 2019

The book will be available for sale at:

Melbourne: The Little Bookroom, Readings St Kilda, Avenue Bookstore, Hill of Content, Farrells Bookshop, Thesaurus Booksellers, North Melbourne Bookshop, Collins Bookshop Moonee Ponds, Dymocks Southland.

Victoria: Collins Booksellers Warrnambool, Collins Booksellers Ballarat, Dymocks Westfield Geelong, Dymocks Geelong.

Tasmania: Hobart Bookshop

Sydney: Kinokuniya

Western Australia: Margaret River Bookshop, Diabolik Books.

Early Harvest 2019 is made possible by the generous support of Gandel Philanthropy and Besen Family Foundation.