Shiloh Blog

A Spin-off series?


I live in South Carolina. My favorite books by you are “Jade Green”, the “Boys vs. Girls” series, and the “Shiloh” series. We read “Shiloh” in summer school back in the 90s. Can you please write a spin off series to “Shiloh”? I want the series to focus on Dara Lynn and Tangerine. We bought a Dalmatian in 2015. He turned 3 on 1/21/18. His name’s Shiloh. I named him after the book series. Shiloh’s litter had six, but one didn’t make it. We got him from a vet in Savannah, GA.  Could I have your autograph?


Phyllis replied:

Thank you for included your name and address (though I don’t post them here).  And yes, I’ll send my autograph.  Good luck with your Shiloh Dalmatian!  Sorry I can’t do a spin-off series of Shiloh.  There are so many other kinds of books, all swimming around in my head, all begging to be written next!

Posted on: March 28, 2018

March for our Lives–a note from Phyllis

Alice McKinley and Marty Preston would have been out there marching with the young people in Washington yesterday.  I am so proud of all of you, all over the country–the world!– who are not afraid to demand sensible and profound changes to the regulation of guns in the United  States.  I think of the young Freedom  Riders who ushered in Civil Rights legislation; the draft-age protesters who saw no end to the Vietnam War–just the slaughter of young men on both sides go on and on; and now you, who will take action when Congress is often too timid to even bring a vote to the floor on even the most reasonable of gun control measures.  In two or three years your generation will hit the polls.  Remember what you heard yesterday:  tell your state and federal lawmakers that if they don’t vote for universal background checks, They’re out!  If they don’t have the courage to stand up to the NRA, Get out!  Organize a town hall and invite your congress person to attend.  If he or she won’t come, invite their opponent.  You have more power than you know.

Posted on: March 25, 2018

Signed books


Can I mail you my Shiloh books to get it signed?


Phyllis replied:

Yes, readers can always send any book of mine to me to be signed.  Make sure you enclose a stamped, self-addressed mailer so that I can get it back to you, and also a note as to whom I should autograph it to.    phyllis

Posted on: March 25, 2018

My Student’s Questions

I am a teacher and I just finished reading Shiloh with my 3-4 grade students. I teach at a small Lutheran school, so my class consists of 5 wonderful children! They are so excited that this site exists. They have some questions for you. If you have time to answer, they would absolutely be thrilled to hear from you!
1. How did you come across the idea of David Howard?

I’m not sure.  I think I wanted to portray a friend from a different economic level, so that readers would know that there are residents in West Virginia who live very comfortable lives, and those like Marty’s family, who have to be very careful with their money.

2. Can you tell us anymore about Judd? Is there are specific reason he loves to hunt?

He makes his living this way, possibly selling the meat or skins to various customers, as well as furnishing food for himself.  There are so many woods and mountains in West  Virginia that hunting season often means a full freezer of food for the family.

3. Do you know if/who the real-life Shiloh was abused by? (Is Judd’s character based off a real person, or was that part your imagination?)

Based entirely on my imagination, since we never did find out who the dog belonged to previously.

4. Did the real-life Shiloh get attacked by a dog?

We don’t know the history of Clover, the real dog.  All I knew when we found her was that she was hungry, dirty, and scared.

5. What did your friends end up naming the real-life Shiloh?


6. What is your favorite book you have written? We would love to read it, too!

Probably Shiloh.  You would love the three books that follow the relationship between Marty, Judd and Shiloh:   Shiloh Season, Saving Shiloh, and A Shiloh Christmas.

My kids want to tell you, “The book was absolutely amazing!”

Thank you for writing to tell me so.   Phyllis

Posted on: March 9, 2018



Does Marty’s dad have a gun


Phyllis replied:

He sometimes went hunting, so I guess he did.  I remember that in one book, the family is eating a rabbit that he shot, and warns the family that they might come across some buckshot.  Some families, especially in rural areas, really depend on hunting to provide some of their food.

Posted on: February 23, 2018

Author study


I am doing an Author Study Project on you. I have read three of your books. THe three books I choose to read were, Shiloh, Shiloh Season, & Saving Shiloh. I have learned that you love animals ,you’re favorite book is Huckleberry finn & that you grew up during the great depression.

I would write more books in the Shiloh series or more animal books. Maybe about Martys life before Shiloh. I was wondering where you get your inspiration? How may kids do you have.  I wanted to thank you for beging such a good author also would you please white back im doing a report on you


I’m afraid there are just too many book ideas in my head that will keep me from writing more Shiloh books.  But you still have “A Shiloh Christmas” to read–that’s the fourth book in the quartet.   I get my inspiration from things that have happened to me, that I read about in the paper, that happen to other people, and just my own imaginings.  I have two sons and four grandchildren.

Posted on: February 15, 2018

Need more Shiloh


I just finished reading the last Shiloh book (Shiloh Christmas) with one of my dyslexic students. I have several that are in the process of reading the series with me. We really need to know will ever write another Shiloh book? They are so inspiring and have convinced my students that reading can be cool!


Phyllis replied:

I don’t plan to write another Shiloh book–just too many other books on my mind.  But if your students like to get immersed in series, why don’t you read to them the first chapter of “The Boys Start the War,” (first book in a 12 book series), followed by “The Girls Get Even.”   In every book, alternate chapters are in the girls’ point of view, then the boys’.   This seems to be a favorite series for 4th and 5th graders.

Posted on: February 13, 2018

Question about Marty and Shiloh


I am a veteran of 28 years in the classroom…mostly with reluctant readers (i.e. dyslexics, learning disabled) and I have NEVER had books that caused my most reluctant boys to want to read more. I say all that to ask you, as an author, would you be okay with someone like me (an aspiring author) writing a book about Marty and Shiloh all grown up. My boys just really want to know things like…does Marty get to become a vet, what happens to Judd, and such. I know you said in one answer that you only had “2 hands and one lifetime” so you were not planning on anymore of the Shiloh series being written. I wait expectantly for your answer!

Phyllis replied:

I am honored that you like the series so much that you want to write a sequel.  But that idea, along with a number of other ideas, is something being considered by the movie producers.  If your boys like series, you might want to start them out by reading aloud to them the first chapter of “The Boys Start the War,” (first of a 12 book series), followed by “The Girls Get Even.”   Pure fun.  Check out these books on my website.


Posted on: February 13, 2018

What gave you the idea of Shiloh?


I was wondering what gave you the idea to write Shiloh, and also I was wondering if you could give me some advise of being a good author.  I love the book Shiloh it is one of my favorites, and I hope you will publish more books for me and my friends to read.
Phyllis replied:
Finding an abused dog in Shiloh, W. Va. is what prompted my writing the book.  To write a good book, you need to have characters that come to life on the page; there needs to be a plot to your story, suspense and conflict.  Stories are best when they come from the heart, possibly something that happened to you, all mixed up with imaginings.
Posted on: January 31, 2018

Attached to Shiloh

I love your books about Shiloh. I didn’t realize how attached you can get to the characters. I am very attached to them. I am a student in 7th grade and in 5th grade we read Shiloh for a book in class and ever since I have been reading the other books. The books are so inspirational and I love how caring Marty is for Shiloh. Thank you for taking time out of your day to read this, and enjoy the rest of you day.


I’m glad you’re enjoying them so much.  I would never have written them if I hadn’t come across that real-life little dog in Shiloh, West  Virginia.

Posted on: January 30, 2018


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