Born June 30 in Chicago, Illinois, he earned his BA at the University of Illinois and MFA at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. In 1969–1970, Dobler was the first "writer-in-residence" at Philips Exeter Academy. Later he taught English Literature and Writing at Windham College, the University of Arizona, and the University of Texas, El Paso. Since 1979 he has taught writing at the University of Pittsburgh.
Dobler was married to the poet Patricia Dobler (1939–2004). He divorced her in 1992.
In 2008 on the 4th of July, he married Julieta (Julie) Barrera. He was found deceased in his home in El Paso, TX on August 15, 2010, aged 71.
- The Last Rush North, novel (Little,Brown, 1976)
- Ice Pick: A Novel about Life and Death in a Maximum Security Prison, novel (Little,Brown, 1974)
- I Made It Myself, (Grosset, 1973)
Source: Contemporary Authors Online. The Gale Group, 2002. PEN (Permanent Entry Number): 0000025909.
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