Last year I participated in a project with MPAN - the Missing Persons Advocacy Network. I was paired up with the family of a missing person and given the challenge of writing a short story. The missing person was Boronia teenager Bung Siriboon, and I spent some time getting to know her stepdad Fred.
It was an extremely challenging experience for me - how do you write about something like that? How do you tell someone's story, when there are so many questions left unanswered? How do cast new light on a story that has already attracted much media attention, while remaining respectful to Bung and her family?
But in reading all the media coverage, I noticed one thing - none of these stories were about Bung. They were about her absence. About her family's grief. About the unanswered questions.
I've tried in my story to fill in that hole. To tell the story of Bung-the-teenager. To honour her as a real person, not an absence or a mystery.
Many, many thanks to Fred Pattison for his time, honesty and compassion.
Bung's story in the anthology is beautifully enhanced by artist Kate Banazi and typographer Andrew Trewern.
Bung's is only one story. There are nine in the anthology, and so many more outside it. You can buy the book here, and 100% of proceeds go to MPAN.