Back from Ireland

Creative Writing class in Ireland

I’m back after spending most of the month of May teaching in Ireland. What an incredible experience! My students, who came from several Tennessee colleges, were some of the most creative students I’ve ever worked with. Ireland is a land of castles, sheep grazing in green pastures, Irish dancing, cliffs, the Aran Islands where people still speak the Irish language – I could go on.  The weather was not as perfect as everything else – too cold and rainy for my liking – but Ireland is truly a magical place and the Irish are warm and welcoming.  Yes, I’m glad to be home, but I’m so glad I had the experience!


I write a little bit of everything - fiction, nonfiction, and sometimes even poetry. For twenty years I served on the English faculty at Nashville State Community College, where I taught composition, literature, and creative writing. I was editor of the literary magazine, Tetrahedra, for eight years, and it was one of the joys of my career to see student writers get their first opportunity to be published. 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. My home is Nashville, close to my two daughters and their families. I like to play tennis and play the piano. Tuesday nights, I meet with a writers group that I've been in for more years than I will say!

4 thoughts on “Back from Ireland

  1. Dennis Stafford

    Phyllis is a great teacher and I enjoyed her class in Ireland. I wish it had been longer, I could have learned so much more. It was good to have a class taught by someone who actually knows what she is talking about.
    I am reading a writer’s magazine and keep coming across things you taught us. Den

    • phyllisgobbell

      The class was successful because of the high level of student participation and the great quality of student writing. It all seems a little like a dream now, doesn’t it!

    • phyllisgobbell

      We were there 3 weeks – 44 student, 4 adults. I taught creative writing and had a wonderful group. Though we put in our 37.5 class hours, we also spent a lot of time seeing the sites – Kilkenny Castle, Cliffs of Moher, Aran Islands, Rock of Cashel – and just being immersed in the culture of the small town, Thurles, where the people were so warm and welcoming. If I were more skilled, I’d put up some photos. Maybe I’ll try anyway!

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