About the Author

headshot-Phyllis-husband+LynnlikePhyllis M Skoy has been writing throughout her life. However, it wasn’t until 2013 that she submitted her work for publication. Phyllis was named Discovery of the Year for “bosque, the magazine” for her short story, “Life After.” Her first novel, What Survives, was short-listed for the Santa Fe Writers Project.

A one-time song lyricist, Phyllis practiced the short form as she studied and pursued a career as a psychotherapist and psychoanalyst. While living in New York City, she studied American Sign Language and Seido Karate and established a karate program for the deaf in collaboration with her karate grandmaster, Kaicho Nakamura. Although she retired as a second degree black belt, her program continues.

Phyllis has a master’s degree in counseling from Fordham University, a master’s degree in social work from Wurzweiler School of Social Work (Yeshiva University) and a certification in the child and adolescent from Metropolitan Institute for Training in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy.

In 2000, Phyllis and her husband relocated to Placitas, New Mexico, but Phyllis returned to NYC in 2001 to work as a volunteer for the Red Cross after Sept. 11.

In addition to “What Survives,” Phyllis is making the final revisions on a family memoir and is writing a prequel to “What Survives” (“Fatma, Daughter of the Prophet”).
Phyllis maintains a small private psychoanalytic practice in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

A Song is Born

Posted by on Feb 8, 2019 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

A Song is Born

To my friends and readers: After many years of not writing song lyrics, my songwriting partner looked me up and we are back at it again. Guy Strobel and I spent many hours at his piano and in Greek diners in New York City. I was 30 years old and he was 29. While I was under the knife, many years later, having a bilateral knee replacement surgery, Guy looked me up and found my brother-in-law in Long Island. Bob gave him my phone number. He called me up while I was still on pain meds, and I was so thrilled to hear from him that I probably...

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Facing the Music by Showing Up

Posted by on Jan 29, 2019 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

Facing the Music by Showing Up

Like many Jewish women, I had to think and rethink whether or not I would participate in this year’s Women’s March. Since the March began, my dear friend, Debbie, and I have gone to Santa Fe to participate. We love the spiritual dedication to the native Tewa people and their land, as well as the strong Native American and Hispanic participation in such beautiful surroundings. Some of you may not know about this, but the Women’s March organization has been fraught with accusations of anti-Semitism. I will not go into the details here, but I...

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It is Time: Thoughts on My New Relationship with Time

Posted by on Jan 22, 2019 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

It is Time: Thoughts on My New Relationship with Time

All of my adult life, I have wished for more time. I dreamed of a life where I only did what I wanted when I wanted. I would read and write as many hours as I wished. I would prepare only healthy food, go for nice, long walks in the country, time being a smorgasbord laid out in front of me, just as it might seem for this fellow, ready to rest all day after a successful kill. But I never really believed I would have this kind of time in my life. Two weeks ago Thursday was my last day as a practicing psychoanalyst. I feel good about the 36...

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Just For Fun: Best Christmas Gift for Django

Posted by on Jan 6, 2019 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

Just For Fun: Best Christmas Gift for Django

After my “bah humbug” blog, I thought it only fair to share about Django’s Christmas. He does have the most fun, because he spends Christmas Day (as do we) with the Firestone Clan and all of their musically named dogs. “Django” is for Django Reinhardt, the French gypsy guitarist. When we named him, we decided to follow in the fine Firestone tradition, as our dogs form a pack. Django was so looking forward to all the dogs he would be seeing there on Christmas Day; I’m never quite sure how many! Last year Django acquired an additional toy, as...

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At bosque launch, I read from ‘Neighbors’

Posted by on Dec 18, 2018 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

At bosque launch, I read from ‘Neighbors’

The support of this community sustains my writing life, and I am grateful On Dec. 6, bosque launched its eighth issue at Bookworks in Albuquerque. What began as a tiny seedling has grown into a rich and committed writing community, and this photo taken at the Bookworks reading shows that. Seated behind me in front is Hilda Raz, poetry editor. On the other side behind me is Jill Root, nonfiction editor. And on the end, next to Jill, is Lynn C. Miller, bosque editor and co-fiction editor with Elisabeth Sharp McKetta (who was not present). We...

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Bah Humbug

Posted by on Dec 4, 2018 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

Bah Humbug

The holidays are upon us once again, and I will take this moment to express how I feel about Christmas gift giving. First of all, in my home, I do not celebrate Christmas. I am Jewish, and I did not grow up in the South where it is more common for Jews to celebrate Christmas. We never had a Hanukkah bush. We always lit the menorah every night. I would have Christian friends over, and my mother always had little gifts for each of us, along with the traditional potato latkes.  As an adult, I prefer to buy a gift when I see something that I...

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The Joy of Reading My Work Aloud

Posted by on Nov 18, 2018 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

The Joy of Reading My Work Aloud

Why You’ll Be Hearing More from Me The first time I read for an audience, I was shaking like a palm tree in hurricane winds. Writers are by nature more introverted folk. We tend to enjoy being with ourselves and our characters, and only with much hesitation and the painful necessity of book sales, do we step up to the podium to speak. These days, after several years of appearances here and there, I have learned to enjoy reading my work to enthusiastic audiences. And it is true that most audiences at readings are enthusiastic, or they would...

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When There Are No Words

Posted by on Nov 6, 2018 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

When There Are No Words

In the aftermath of a mass shooting of 11 Jews at the Tree of Life synagogue, my sorrow and outrage lead me to ask: Where is the safe place? When there are no words, I breathe. I take in deep breaths, let them out slowly, until the words come. They come to me reluctantly, and then I have to breathe again until they flow more easily. When they cease to come, I breathe again, and finally, I take a break to make çay (Turkish tea) and drink it while I breathe. People often ask me what I do to keep on writing. Am I ever at a loss for words? Often,...

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Holding on to a Loving State of Mind

Posted by on Oct 29, 2018 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

Holding on to a Loving State of Mind

These are crazy times in a world gone mad, but fear does not have to control our lives, our speech, our manner of being in the world or how we respond to our fellow human beings. Let me use an example. I cannot know about you, but I was quite disappointed in Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s publicizing of her DNA. She let Trump’s insanity occupy her and caused her to behave in ways that echo Trump himself. We have to try our best to continue a spiritual state of mind before and after meditation or prayer, whatever it may be that we do. Praying or...

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‘In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonight’

Posted by on Oct 9, 2018 in The Writing Life | 0 comments

‘In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonight’

For the sake of our republic, this is no time to sleep Our republic has fallen asleep. Like a person whose partner is cheating, we have closed our eyes until it might be too late. In our innocence, we are slowly (perhaps not so slowly) losing what we once fought so hard to achieve. If we are the guiding light for the world, our world is in trouble. Our president has declared recently sworn in U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh “proven innocent.” Can someone tell me please, in what court of law? In fact, he has not been proven innocent...

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