Oliver Phommavanh

Oliver Phommavanh

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Oliver loves to make people laugh, whether it’s on the page writing humour for kids or on stage as a stand-up comedian. He also shares his passion for writing with children, using his experience as a primary school teacher. Oliver’s books are packed with laughs, but also carry a lot of heart and authentic characters living in a multicultural Australia.

As a comedian, Oliver has appeared on stage and on national TV and radio. He has also appeared in numerous anthologies such as Growing Up Asian in Australia; Funny Buggers; and Trust Me Too.

Oliver is a fresh, positive voice for cultural diversity in children’s literature and has appeared in countless writers, arts and comedy festivals across Australia. He has also travelled overseas, appearing at many international writers’ festivals. In 2018, he continued to travel around Asia, with the Singapore Writers Festival’s Words Go Round program; Sharjah Children Reading Festival; and NEEV Literature Festival in Bangalore, India. This year, Oliver will return to India for the Disha Literature Festival.

Oliver’s first book Thai-riffic! was published in 2010 and has made an impact on the literature scene, winning the hearts of many kids and adults alike. It has been on the shortlist for the Young Australia Best Book Awards (YABBAs) and Kids Own Australia’s Literature Awards (KOALAs) for five years straight, earning a place in the KOALA Hall of Fame. It has been adapted for stage and made its premiere at Sydney’s Seymour Centre theatre and Monkey Baa Theatre in 2017.

Oliver followed Thai-riffic! up with Con-nerd, which has also resonated with readers, shortlisted in both the YABBAs and KOALAs for the last three years running. It was also included in the NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge. In 2012, Oliver released Punchlines and Thai-no-mite. In 2015, Oliver brought out a book for the Stuff Happens series called Ethan. He followed that up with The Other Christy in 2016 and Super Con-nerd in 2017.

His latest new book, Natural Born Loser came out last August to rave reviews. He is also featured in a collection of short stories called Total Quack Up (raising funds for Dymocks Children Charities).

Oliver is proud to be a Room To Read Author Ambassador, a non-profit organisation that brings literature to kids around the world. He is also an ambassador for the NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge.