Tom Parks retired recently as a professor and dean at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin following a 52-year career as an educator and author. He has written, edited or published some twelve books, including a best-selling guide on language usage and grammar, a children’s novel, short stories, literary anthologies, and over 200 essays, articles, and features.
Over the past two years, his plays have been produced in Chicago, Off Broadway in New York City, Odessa, and have won awards in Washington DC and Virginia. Two of his short plays were made into movies earlier this year. Before moving to Midland fifteen years ago, he taught at Clemson University and Lehigh University. He holds four degrees in English, including a Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University.
Local playwright’s work will debut as short film in First Thursday Film Festival
Published 7:59 am, Sunday, April 2, 2017
After more than 50 years in academia, Tom Parks decided to focus on writing for the stage. The former professor and associate dean of the University of Texas of the Permian Basin had his one-act play “Objects in Mirror” produced into a staged reading in 2014. Now, his writing has been transformed into a short film that he partially directed.
The 15-minute short “An Atheist’s Prayer” will screen this week as part of the First Thursday Film Festival, which focuses on local talent. It’s led by screenwriter David Bryant Perkins, who is scouting locations in Midland for his screenplay “The Man Who Beat Mark Spitz” about swimmer Doug Russell, a former Midlander.