Saturday, July 27, 2013

Welcome to Cindy Thomson!

Is there a story behind your book Grace’s Pictures?
Grace’s Pictures refers to the pictures she takes with her new Brownie camera, an invention that brought photography to the masses, and also out on the streets where some people did not want their pictures taken. Grace is trying to capture something she sees in other people’s faces.

 What started you on your writing journey?
My genealogy research. As I complied names and dates, I began to wonder who these people were and what made them emigrate. You can only understand that if you study the social history of the time, and even so you can only piece together so much. So I began to fictionalize it. My first novel has not been published, but I went on to write others. I continue to be enthralled by our ancestor’s stories.

What kind of books do you enjoy reading?  
Historical fiction is my favorite, but I also enjoy biographies, and books on ancient Celtic history. I love Liz Curtis Higgs’s historicals. I also enjoy Francine Rivers’s historicals. One of my favorites was Her Mother’s Hope (and also Redeeming Love.) I love the generational saga. There are many others I love, but it would take too much space to tell them all and even then I would think of more later. As for biographies, I like baseball biographies. To hear about the life of a man outside the game fascinates me. But I also really enjoyed 1776 by David McCullough. I would like to read more of his books. As for Celtic books, other than history texts, I like J. Philip Newell’s Listening For the Heartbeat of God, the late John O’ Donohue books, and Esther DeWaal’s. But I’ve also been known to read Nicholas Sparks, Marilynne Robinson, Sue Monk Kidd, C.S. Lewis…okay, I better stop! As you can tell my reading tastes are all over the board.

Which character in your new release most interested you while you wrote? Why?
The main character, Grace McCaffery, because she was so hard to figure out. Grace longs for something she sees in other people and she tries to capture it, in drawings and photographs, so she can study it. Her journey leads her to not only find what she is looking forand in unexpected places and peoplebut also allows her to discover that she too can possess it. But she can be her own worse enemy along the way. One of my editors commented that she just loved Grace with those children (she’s a nanny) and as a mom and a former preschool teacher, I loved Grace with those children too.

If you could paint or sculpt like a famous artist who would it be and why?
I’m not going to pick one of the masters. I’d say Norman Rockwell because his paintings told stories through the lives of ordinary people.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Off the top of my head, I’d say stay at a monastery in Ireland that practiced silence. It’s run by French monks. They were very welcoming, but it just wasn’t my thing. I’m not that quiet and reflective, I guess!

What is your strangest habit?
I have to watch as many Reds games as I can right to the end, no matter the score. I won’t say I don’t do other things while I’m watching a three-hour game, but I can’t seem to leave it before the last out is made. With the exception of games that go late, unless it’s a playoff game. My editor, who is a baseball fan thankfully, once kidded me about my sending her an email during a game. She thought I would stick to my priorities, so she was surprised to hear from me right then.

What do you like most about the area where you live and/or grew up?
I love that we are just average people in the Midwest. Hardworking, traditional values, affordable cost of living. There is nothing extraordinary about where I live (except fall color) and yet that alone can be extraordinary to some people. It’s amusing when you travel and find out people think of Ohio as some exotic place because they’ve never been here, or perhaps have never met anyone who lives there.

What is a favorite memory from your childhood?
One of my favorite memories is my mom reading Charlotte’s Web to me before bed. I was actually old enough at the time to read it myself, but hearing my mom tell the story meant I did not have to read the words myself and was better able to imagine it and get lost in that fictional world. It’s still one of my favorites of all time.

Has some place you have traveled inspired something in your writing?
I wrote about Ireland before I was able to travel there. My ancestors were Scots-Irish, and that’s what started the whole writing thing for me. Ireland is an inspiring place. Readers who would like to know more and see pictures of my travels can visit my blogs: and

Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?  
What always seems to come out in my writing is the spiritual journey, the seeking, the process, and about how past hurts when it comes to family ties can be healed.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?

Grace’s Pictures is the first of a series set at the turn of century in New York City with characters who are recent immigrants. The others do not at this writing have release dates.

Back Cover Blurb

Grace McCaffery hopes that the bustling streets of New York hold all the promise that the lush hills of Ireland did not. As her efforts to earn enough money to bring her mother to America fail, she wonders if her new Brownie camera could be the answer. But a casual stroll through a beautiful New York City park turns into a hostile run-in with local gangsters, who are convinced her camera holds the first and only photos of their elusive leader. A policeman with a personal commitment to help those less fortunate finds Grace attractive and longs to help her, but Grace believes such men cannot be trusted. Spread thin between her quest to rescue her mother, do well in a new nanny job, and avoid the gang intent on intimidating her, Grace must put her faith in unlikely sources to learn the true meaning of courage and forgiveness.

To buy her book, go here:

About Cindy:

Cindy Thomson is a writer and an avid genealogy enthusiast. Her love of history and her Scots-Irish heritage have inspired much of her writing, including her new Ellis Island series. Cindy is also the author of Brigid of Ireland and Celtic Wisdom: Treasures from Ireland. She combined her love of history and baseball to co-author the biography Three Finger: The Mordecai Brown Story, which was a finalist for the Society for American Baseball Research's Larry Ritter Book Award. In addition to books, Cindy has written on a regular basis for numerous online and print publications and is a mentor for the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild. She is also a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and the Historical Novel Society. Cindy and her husband have three grown sons and live in central Ohio. Visit her online at

To connect with Cindy, go here:

Cindy Thomson is giving away a copy of Grace's Pictures. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses.
To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You may enter the book giveaway twice -- once on each spotlight post. (It's not too late to go back and leave a comment on yesterday's post.)

Off to read another great book!
Sandra M. Hart


squiresj said...

Would love to win and review this book. I have not read this author. jrs362 at Hotmail dot com

Judy Cooper said...

Cindy Thomson is a new author to me,I know I would enjoy the book, thank you for the chance to enter. Judy Cooper,

Mary / Touch of Heaven said...

As I have Irish ancesters, this book sounds really interesting to me. atouchofheaven2010 at gmail dot com

apple blossom said...

thanks for the chance to win this book
ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Martha Sturm said...

Another new author to enjoy! Thank you for the chance to win.


Bonnie Traher said...

Would love to win.

Wendy Newcomb said...

I love this cover and would love to win the book, thank you for hosting this contest.


sm said...

I'm from N. Ireland and your book sounds interesting of an Irish lady settling in NYC, meets gangsters, etc. Love to win and read it. sharon, CA wileygreen1(at)yahoo(dot)com

KayM said...

I've always enjoyed visiting Ohio. there are so many small, welcoming towns. I also think Cincinnati is a great place to visit. Grace's pictures sounds like an interesting book. Thank you for offering an opportunity to win a copy.
may_dayzee (at) yahoo (dot) com

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this beautiful novel

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

Interesting interview. Sounds good. Please put my name in. Thanks Cindy and Sandra.
MAXIE mac262(at)me(dot)com

MsRubyKat said...

Would love to win and read this book. I enjoy reading novel of Ellis Island and immigrants. Thank you.
Karen G.

Jo said...

I enjoyed the interview and would love to win a copy of this book.


Cindi A said...

Such an interesting story teaser. I'd love the opportunity to read this book. Please enter me in the giveaway.



HomePlace Gatherings said...

Photography, suspense, romance, sounds great!

priviesandprims at yahoo .com

Cindy Thomson said...

Thanks for your interest, everyone! Kay I love Cincinnati too, and you're right about the small towns. :)

Kay from NY said...

Hope this giveaway is still on. I would love a chance to win this book. The cover looks really nice and the book sounds good, too. Thanks.

Merry said...

I love stories about immigrants and NYC, please include me for Grace's Pictures.
worthy2bpraised at gmail dot com

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