Since 2002 Phyllis Gobbell has served on the English faculty at Nashville State Community College, where she is now Associate Professor.  She teaches courses in composition, creative writing, and literature. She served as editor of the literary magazine, Tetrahedra, for eight years.

She earned her B.S. in Education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and received her M.A. in English from Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, Tennessee, where the graduate program offered a creative thesis option.  Her thesis was a 90-page collection of stories entitled Listen to Me. Most of the stories have been published in literary journals and have received awards.

Gobbell’s writing career spans three decades. Her history of publication includes both fiction and nonfiction. She has published two novels and more than thirty stories and articles in literary journals, anthologies, and magazines. One of her stories appeared in the anthology, HomeWorks, in 1996,  a collection of writings by Tennessee writers living at that time, including Alex Haley, Robert Penn Warren, and Peter Taylor.

Gobbell received the Tennessee Arts Commission’s Individual Artist Award in Fiction for 2006. Other writing achievements include the Leslie Garrett Fiction Prize awarded by the Knoxville Writers Guild, Tennessee Writers Alliance Short Story First Place Award, and the North Carolina Writers’ Workshop First Place Award in Creative Nonfiction. In 2005, she received a Pushcart nomination for her story, “Primates,” which was published in Bellevue Literary Review. She won the 2008 Creative Nonfiction First Place Award from the Knoxville Writers’ Guild for her essay, “In the Car with Mother on Christmas Eve.” Twice she has received the Leslie Garrett Award for Fiction, most recently in 2014.

An active participant in the writing community, Gobbell helped to organize the Tennessee Writers Alliance in 1990 and served on its Board of Directors for ten years, including two terms as president and one as chair of the Board.  She was also a founding member of the writers group that still meets every Tuesday night, the Nashville Writers Alliance.

She is a writer of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.  Two true-crime books, An Unfinished Canvas (Berkley, 2007) and A Season of Darkness (Berkley, 2010) are accounts of high-profile, cold-case murders in Nashville. She is now writing the Jordan Mayfair Mystery Series: Pursuit in Provence (Five Star, 2015) and Secrets and Shamrocks (Five Star, 2016).  Treachery in Tuscany (Encircle) was released in Spring 2018.

Contact: pgobbell@bellsouth.net


Treachery in Tuscany (Encircle Publishers, 2018) – mystery

Secrets and Shamrocks (Five Star Publishers, 2016) – mystery

“What We Keep, What We Throw Away” (2 Bridges Review, 2016) – creative nonfiction

Pursuit in Provence (Five Star Publishers, 2015) – mystery

Seeing Possibilities” (THINK: Resilience, 2013) – essay

There Are Things You Cannot Take Back” (Tetrahedra, 2013) – poem

The Major’s Wife” (Zone 3, 2012) – short story

Lost InnocenceMasters of True Crime: Chilling Stories of Murder and Mayhem (Prometheus Books, 2012) – narrative in true crime anthology

Texting” (Tetrahedra, 2012) – poem

Back from Afghanistan” (Tetrahedra, 2012) – poem

A Season of Darkness (Berkley Publishing Group, 2010) – true crime book2

An Unfinished Canvas: A True Story of Love, Family, and Murder in Nashville  (Berkley Publishing Group, 2007) – true crime book

Saturday Afternoon” (Tetrahedra, 2007) – short story

Primates” (Bellevue Literary Review, 2003) – short story

Tellico” (Zone 3, 2002) – short story

“Crystal Ball” (Red Mud Review, 2002) – short story

Marie” (Bellevue Literary Review, 2002) – creative nonfiction

All I Know” (Tetrahedra, 2009) – poem

Baby Love” (Tetrahedra, 2009) – poem

“Fallujah Villanelle” (Tetrahedra, 2008) – poem

Storyteller” (Tetrahedra, 2008) – poem

Seamstress” (Tetrahedra, 2007) – poem

Death Knocks in the Neighborhood” (Tetrahedra, 2006) – poem

Snakes” (Tetrahedra, 2005) – poem

Gentle” (Tetrahedra, 2004) – poem

Grief” (Tetrahedra, 2004) – poem


“Hungry,” Honorable Mention, Glimmer Train Family Matters Contest, 2017

“A Family Meeting,”First Place, Leslie Garrett Fiction Prize, 2014

“A Fine Party,” Leslie Garrett Fiction Prize Second Place, 2013

“Playing by Ear,” Third Place,” Knoxville Writers’ Guild Creative Non-Fiction Contest, 2013

“What We Keep, What We Throw Away,” Second Place,” Knoxville Writers’ Guild Creative Non-Fiction Contest, 2011

“What We Keep, What We Throw Away,” Third Place, Writers’ Workshop of Asheville, NC, 2011

“The Major’s Wife,” Leslie Garrett Fiction Prize Third Place, 2010

Second Place, “Stitches in Time,” Knoxville Writers’ Guild Creative Non-Fiction Contest, 2010

First Place, “In the Car with Mother,” Knoxville Writers’ Guild Creative Non-Fiction Contest, 2008

Individual Artist Fellowship (Fiction), Tennessee Arts Commission, 2006

Ragdale Foundation Residency, 2006

Pushcart Nomination for “Primates” Bellevue Literary Review, 2005

First place, “Tellico,” Leslie Garrett Fiction Prize, 2002

First place, “Primates,” Short Story Contest, Tennessee Writers Alliance, 2002

“Marie” Creative Nonfiction Winner, Writers’ Workshop of Asheville, NC, 2001

13 Responses to About

  1. Jennifer Bruse-Markwell says:

    I bought a copy of Treachery in Tuscany last month, which my husband David took over to you to sign, and I just finished reading it. I loved it! In addition to the story line, I enjoyed the descriptions of the places and cuisine around Florence and the Tuscan countryside. I had visited this area a couple of times when I was younger, and now I want to visit again. I am looking forward to reading your other books in the Jordan Mayfair series.


    Jennifer Bruse-Markwell

  2. Dolores Kase says:

    Your Pursuit in Provence is a treat I’ll not forget. It makes me want to return to France, break free of Paris’ allure (temporarily, of course) and immerse myself in Provence. Actually you’ve already begun the process: I can smell the lavender and smile at that unique light. Thank you.

  3. Carolyn Gallaher Hampton says:

    Phyllis, I am so happy to be a FB friend and a relative. Your accomplishments are impressive and look forward to keeping current. Carolyn

  4. Brenda Collie Rose says:

    Just another one of your long-time friends
    checking in to say I am so proud of
    you! Hope to be at a booksigning.Your
    current work sounds so profound and a story
    that had to be told.
    “Riding In Car…” oh, Phyllis, it is beautiful
    and so was Marie. I laughed and then realized
    tears were streaming down my nose and face!
    I haven’t read everything yet but plan to do so.
    Cindy and David keep me in touch with all goings on
    of West End friends.

    • phyllisgobbell says:

      What a surprise and joy to hear from you! Martha Jo mentions you often. I’m glad you liked “In the Car With Mother.” I’ve written quite a bit about her. We were so lucky with our moms, weren’t we?

  5. dsf poker says:

    You got a definitely helpful blog I’ve been right here reading for about an hour. I’m a newbie and your accomplishment is quite a lot an inspiration for me.

  6. Keep working ,great job!

  7. Legalsounds says:

    A thoughtful insight and ideas I will use on my blog. You’ve obviously spent some time on this. Thank you!

  8. learvebrisfal says:

    I like your site! This is my page

  9. loans says:

    I want to thank the blogger very much not only for this post but also for his all previous efforts. I found phyllisgobbell.com to be extremely interesting. I will be coming back to phyllisgobbell.com for more information.

  10. Darryl Luna says:

    I don’t know any of the above symbols or how to use them. This is a very impressive page. I look forward to reading An Unfinished Canvas

    • phyllisgobbell says:

      I don’t know what all of the symbols mean, either, so I’m just going to stay in the box! Thanks so much for checking out my web site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.