Little Laos on the Prairie’s motto:
The Laod perspective. Serving a hot dish of news, culture & life.
Since the first annual Lao American Writers Summit gathering took place in Minneapolis back in 2010, like-minded Lao Americans Danny Khotsombath and Chanida Phaengdara Potter decided to write about their experiences as Lao Americans raised in the Mild Mild Midwest. Little Laos on the Prairie (LLOTP) was born in 2011, with the goals of telling our stories, sharing our history and our love of reconnecting with our roots, culture, community, and news that connect the diaspora communities to the Mekong memories of Southeast Asia.
LLOTP is an online storytelling publication driven by a team of Lao American writers committed to sharing the journeys, cultures, and livelihoods of the Lao Diaspora experience. Through LLOTP’s simplified and creative platform, LLOTP aims to make space for our stories to be accessible, increase visibility of our culturally-specific issues, and empower Lao Diaspora communities across the globe to take ownership of their diverse voices.
We are sabai sabai at LLOTP. We’re open and welcoming to newbies. Shoot us an email or to our message box below, to join our internationally-acclaimed team of bLaoggers.
MEET THE WRITING TEAM
Chanida Phaengdara Potter, Founding Editor-in-Chief
“Writing is reflection. It gives hope, meaning, and best of all: a voice.”
Chanida Phaengdara Potter is an equity amplifier, community architect, disruptive storyteller and durian fanatic. She enjoys crafting stories from the underrepresented and amplifying their voices. She’s the founding editor of Little Laos on the Prairie, executive director of The SEAD Project. Born in Viengxai, Laos; Chanida’s home is both in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Phone Hong, Laos. She has worked 10 years in the nonprofit field on communications, public affairs, community development, and human rights advocacy. She has a BA in Global Studies and Communications from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and a MS in Public Administration from Hamline University. Chanida has been featured on Twin Cities Daily Planet, Asian American Press, The Uptake, Minnesota Public Radio, Star Tribune, Pioneer Press, Voice of America; among others. She currently serves on the board for the award-winning citizen journalism organization, Twin Cities Media Alliance.
Bryan Thao Worra, Co-Editor, Arts & Culture Contributor
“Are you asking the right questions?”
A Lao American writer, Bryan Thao Worra’s work is featured in over 90 international publications and his writing is taught in schools around the world. He is the author of several collections of poetry including On The Other Side Of The Eye, Touching Detonations, The Tuk-Tuk Diaries: My Dinner With Cluster Bombs, Winter Ink, and Barrow. He received a 2009 Asian Pacific Leadership Award for the Arts from state Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans and holds a Fellowship in Literature from the National Endowment for the Arts. He is the President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association. You can also visit him online at thaoworra.
Saysomphorn “Sai” Sisavatdy, Managing Editor
Saysomphorn Sisavatdy has been alphabetizing her canned goods since moving out on her own for college (really, the method works wherever it makes sense). She graduated from Western Washington University with a BA in Philosophy. While Metaphysics let her explore without limits, Logic always brought her back down to earth. After 10 years in NYC and the Corporate world; where she mainly worked for Tom’s of Maine, Colgate-Palmolive, and Dr. Hauschka, she has decided to take some risks. At some point, she hopes to have the physical energy, emotional capability, and time to write about her family. Today is not that day. In the meantime, she’s excited to reconnect with her more creative side again. Perhaps sometime soon, she’ll pick the flute back up and rejoin that part of her soul that singing in the car, and drunk Karaoke…
Timothy Singratsomboune, Social Justice Writer
Timothy Singratsomboune is a Khon Lao + Khon Kao writer and actor from Columbus, Ohio. Former Grassroots Organizer and current Angry Minority, Tim enjoys writing about a range of social issues including racial justice, LGBTQ life, and equal access to resources. After a stormy, protest-laden spell at Ohio State University, Tim found himself with an Ethnic Studies degree, and has since reinvested himself into screen and narrative writing. Tim hopes to one day write a bestseller that is one part The Craft and two parts Boyz n The Hood – except very Lao, and very very LGBTQ. You can catch a glimpse of Tim’s collaborative activism work by searching the hashtag #Cbus2Ferguson on any major social media site; and his collaborative film work by searching for Horizon Side Films. @Singharajah on any social media. Topics: Grassroots Organizing, Queer Theory/Critical Race Theory, Screenwriting, Critiques of Journalism, Racial Justice, Workers Rights, Ohio/Midwest Life, Diversity in Media, LGBTQ Issues, Writing Struggles, Occasional Ratchetness
Donna Luangmany, Canadian Diaspora Correspondent
“Sabaidee. Cheese and rap are probably all that’s interesting about me.”
Donna is a Lao Canadian living in Windsor, Ontario (right across the river from Detroit!). She has a double bachelor’s degree in English Literature and Education, both from the University of Windsor. Donna loves motherhood, photography, art, and food — especially Lao food.
Other BLaoggers and Contributors:
- Aeden Ou
- Leslie Chanthaprasouk
- MK Khamchanh
- Dr. Ketmani Kouanchao
- Alex Nok Phasy
- Danny Khotsombath
LLOTP believes in welcoming diverse voices about the Lao community, culture and people. Got a story? Interested in contributing to Little Laos on the Prairie? Send us your story tip to firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the contact form below.