Stilwell writing teacher's work to be featured in true-crime episode

CUTLINE: Author Faith Phillips will discuss her many projects at the Stilwell Friends of the Library event Thursday, Jan. 13 at 5 p.m.

 

STILWELL, Okla. – Faith Phillips taught creative writing at a Northeastern Oklahoma high school for the past two years, and now, the attorney and author is a filmmaker, executive producer and publisher.

Phillips was on hand last week at the Stilwell Public Library to discuss and sign copies of her three books: "Ezekiel’s Wheels," "It’s Not That Hard To," and "Now I Lay Me Down" – the true life story of three murdered girls and the Oklahoma woman who pursued them. This book has gained widespread recognition, and Oxygen Network will air a true crime episode based on it.

Last March, Upper West Side Productions contacted Phillips to make an episode for Oxygen Network based on her true crime novel, "Now I Lay Me Down.” Now she is the executive producer of an upcoming true crime documentary with Texas Crew Productions.

“When they contacted me, I was working on a screenplay based on research [Stilwell High School] students did on a notorious Oklahoma true crime. I signed a film production deal with them in June and we are currently in production on the project. We filmed the students at SHS in December,” said Phillips. 

She expects the film to debut in late 2022.

“My deep desire is to screen the film in Stilwell first, before it is seen anywhere else in the nation. I want it to coincide with the opening of our Adair County Arts District and have a red carpet event for our students,” she said. 

Phillips launched her own publishing company called, "Okie Noir Press.”

“I want to publish books from our people and our culture because I feel like we are born with storytelling in our genes. I do have plans to create a production company in the future. We should be telling our own stories,” Phillips said.

Even with a busy schedule, she writes daily, but has put her own books on the back burner for the time being while filming the documentary series, and is publishing a book called, "Rise Up.” This is the story of a woman whose 2-year-old grandsons drowned in a tragic accident. She writes with raw honesty about her grief and how her faith was the only thing that got her through.

“It's a very emotional, powerful story that I felt deserved to be told now. The world needs to hear stories of faith and hope right now. We are faced with so much strife and conflict. I want to tell the stories of survivors to give people hope. I'm called on to be a peacemaker,” Phillips said. 

 

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