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“Stop! Do you realise what you are doing? Why can’t you be kinder to yourself?”

Xie Shi Min & Richard Phua

Xiao Yan

Dealing with insecurities: Everybody has their own approach to it. For Zhen Ni, she isolates herself with her headphones. It has always worked for her as she escapes the external criticisms and self-doubts that plagued her life.

Or at least she thought so - until one bizarre morning when Zhen Ni realises that she can hear her colleagues' gibberish whispers and see taunting words on their featureless faces. Her panic mounts as her once-reliable plan begins to fail her. What can she do? How can she deal with her insecurities next?

An Interview with Xie Shi Min & Xiao Yan

1 of 18    Join Shi Min and Xiao Yan in this unique, quirky interview – illustrated by the creators!

DID YOU KNOW? Shi Min and Xiao Yan depict Richard as an all-seeing eraser in their illustrated interview – he sees every small detail… including the ones that need to go!

Xie Shi Min is an award-winning writer who lives in a book fort. Her fiction has appeared in journals like Rambutan Literary and Cha. Her first book, Dragonhearted, was shortlisted for the Scholastic Asian Book Awards 2014, and published in 2016. It was also shortlisted for the Singapore Book Awards 2017, and won the Hedwig Anuar Children’s Book Awards in 2018. In her spare time, she hugs fat cats. According to her, the fatter they are, the better.

Richard grew up among comics but didn't expect to work on making them; for the plot holes were far too vast and endless, he ended up tumbling down one after another. He was last sighted at page 14.

Xiao Yan enjoys drawing a wide variety of subject matters from absurdist misadventures to the reimaginings of historical characters and faraway tribes. Her comic illustrations have been published by Epigram Books, Esquire magazine, The Substation, Marshall Cavendish Books and VICE Indonesia.

Website: www.thirdtentacle.net