Wayne County News


Someone emailed me and told me that there is an article in the Wayne County News about A Season of Darkness. There is something about having your hometown newspaper publish an article about you.  It is very gratifying.


My day job is teaching English. Since 2002 I have served on the English faculty at Nashville State Community College, where I have taught courses in composition, literature, and creative writing. I am editor of the literary magazine, Tetrahedra. I earned my B.S. in Education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and received my M.A. in English from Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, Tennessee, where the graduate program offered both creative thesis and scholarly thesis options. I submitted a creative thesis, a 90-page collection of stories entitled Listen to Me. Most of the stories have been published in literary journals and/or have received awards. My writing career spans three decades. My history of publication includes both fiction and nonfiction. I have published two novels and more than thirty stories and articles in literary journals, anthologies, and magazines. It was an honor for me when one of my stories appeared in HomeWorks in 1996. The anthology was a collection of works by Tennessee writers living at that time, including Alex Haley, Robert Penn Warren, and Peter Taylor. The highlight of my writing career occurred when I 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, I received a Pushcart nomination for my story, “Primates,” which was published in Bellevue Literary Review. My most recent award came from the Knoxville Writers’ Guild, the 2008 Creative Nonfiction First Place Award for my essay, “In the Car with Mother on Christmas Eve.” I am a founding member of the Tennessee Writers Alliance and served on its Board of Directors for ten years, including two terms as president and one as chair of the Board.

4 thoughts on “Wayne County News

  1. Steve Collie

    I have read the book completely, some parts more than once. A very complelling story and a great read. You did a great job with this and I know there was a lot of work put into the reseachr.
    I’ve passed the book around to some of the folks here. You may not know this but several of us know John Thrope and his family. John went on a golf trip with us for years until he move to North Carolina.Please stay in touch and call if you come to Waynesboro anytime soon.
    Steve C

    • phyllisgobbell

      It’s great to hear from you, and I apologize for just now replying. At least I don’t think I replied. (I am getting quite old, you know.) Thank you for the comment about the book, and, yes, John Thorpe was an important figure in the case. How terrible to be known as the person whose garage had such a grim story behind it.

      I was so glad to see David at one of our signings. I do come to Waynesboro occasionally because my mother’s house is for sale. We decided to put in central air & heat, so there are workers there right now, but if you know anyone who is interested, please let Jeff Davis, the realtor, know. I think it’s a sweet deal for a young couple or an older person. I’ve renovated it almost completely.

      Thank you for visiting my website. I am going to bring it up to date today, and I always love to see comments from Waynesboro friends! Hope you and yours are doing well.

  2. Steve Collie

    I did see the article in the Wayne County News. We are very proud of your success as a writer and also anxious to read this book. We followed the case on TV and the paper for years. Hope to see you on the book circuit and get my signed copy.
    Good Luck and continue Success
    STEVE and Gilda Collie

    • phyllisgobbell

      Good to hear from you guys! David bought a book for you. I’ve had to order more, so as soon as they come in, I’ll be sending them along. I have the fondest memories of those years in West End – Brenda and me, and a dozen boys! What fun! Kick the can, and you all even let us play basketball with you.

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