Friday, December 28, 2012

Interview with Cindy McDonald, Author of Dangerous Deception

For the past twenty years Cindy has helped her husband raise, train, and race Thoroughbreds at their forty-five acre farm known as Fly-By-Night Stables near Pittsburgh.

During those years Cindy has paid close attention to the characters that hang-out at the back-side of the track. She found the situations and life style most intriguing. In 2005 she sat down at her computer and began a journey into writing about this life that few understand.

Cindy has recently retired from making her living as a professional choreographer. She owned and operated Cindy McDonald’s School of Dance since 1985. She studied at Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School and with the Pittsburgh Dance Alloy at Carnegie Mellon University to name a few. She has choreographed many musicals and an opera for the Pittsburgh Savoyards.

To find out more about future books of the Unbridled Series, please visit Cindy’s website at:

How to contact Cindy McDonald:

My website:

My FB page:

I’m a goodreads author:

Yep, I’m on twitter. Here’s my handle: @cindymcdonald7

My books are available on amazon:

Hot Coco:

Dangerous Deception:

Where did you grow up?

I was born and raised in the Pittsburgh area. I love the people. They are friendly and generous and God do they love their sports teams—especially the Steelers, but then again it’s been rumored that even God is a Steelers fan.

When did you begin writing?

I’ve been writing since I was a teen but life happened—getting married, having children, opening my dance school, and everything else that life shoveled in my direction. It wasn’t until 2005 that I sat down in front of my computer and started pounding out the Unbridled scripts. I don’t know what made me sit down, but I felt a tug to start writing and I’m so very glad that I did.

Do you write during the day, at night or whenever you can sneak a few moments?

I love to write in the evening, it is the quiet time of day, and my thoughts turn to my latest Unbridled adventure, and what dodgy debacle I will ask Mike, Shane, Punch, or Lugowski to walk into without hesitation. I finish cleaning up the dinner dishes, check to see what my husband is watching on TV, I pour myself a glass of wine, and then retire downstairs to my office, where my characters live inside my computer. They are waiting for me—sometimes in a panic, depending on what state of affairs I’ve left them in the last time we met. I click on the file, take a deep breath, a sip of the wine, re-read what I wrote the night before, and then I ask myself one question: what if?

What is this book about?

Vic Deveaux’s glory days as a winning jockey have ended, but he refuses to accept that pile of horse hockey!

When the West family asks Vic to take an easier position at their Thoroughbred farm, Westwood, he becomes enraged and teams up with two greedy stable hands in a scheme to kidnap the youngest son, Shane.

Things turn ugly when Vic discovers that his new-found friends have murder on their minds. Suddenly Vic finds himself between a rock and a hard place. He has betrayed his good friend, Eric West, but will he participate in his son’s murder as well?

Not content to sit at home and wait for her men to bring her brother home, Kate West convinces homicide detective, Carl Lugowski, to check out a hunch at an old abandoned mansion. Soon they’re trapped in a hornet’s nest of a notorious biker gang.

Oh yeah, Vic’s deception has placed the West family in more danger than they know what to do with!

What inspired you to write it?

Actually, The Unbridled Series did not start out as a book series, but rather a TV drama and the Hollywood readers loved the premise and my scripts—I had written nineteen in all, an entire season. Problem was we just couldn’t sell it. Finally one of the readers said to me, “Cindy, don’t be stupid. Turn the scripts into a book series.” And so I did! Dangerous Deception is one of the nineteen scripts. In other words, I have terrific outlines for quite a few books for this series.

Who is your favorite character from the book?

Honestly, I love all my characters. Each one holds a special place in my heart, but if I had to pick one to write about today, it would be Lugowski—Lieutenant Carl Lugowski that is. He is a homicide detective at the Rosemount Police Department, and he dates Mike West’s ex-wife, Ava. Now here’s the kicker—he’s in love with Mike’s younger sister, Kate. Ouch! He wrestles and wrangles with his feelings for Kate because he has always been in love with Ava. And now Ava is exactly where he always wanted her to be—in his life and in his bed.

Lugowski also has a nicotine addiction. Boy oh boy do I have a blast writing in his struggle to give up those cigarettes, and all the little quirks that he has with the cancer sticks. Eric West once said to him (in the first book, Deadly.Com) “I thought you quit smoking.” Lugowski answer was—“It’s on my bucket list.”
Will Lugowski ever be able to kick the habit? Mmmm, not on my watch—he’s just too much fun to torment.

Where can readers purchase a copy of your book?

All of my books can be purchased at,, and where all fine books are sold.

Do you have a video trailer to promote your book? If yes, where can readers find it?

Yes, my daughter and I create all the book trailers for The Unbridled Series and we have a blast doing so. You can see the trailers for all the books on my website:

What is one piece of advice you would like to share with aspiring authors everywhere?

Write every day. Get a good editor and listen to their insights. A good writer only becomes better by accepting helpful criticism and putting it to use. Clutching your manuscript to chest and refusing suggestions is not a good plan in growth.

What is up next for you?

Presently, I am busy working on the fourth book of The Unbridled Series, Against the Ropes, which will be released in June 2013. I am always a book ahead and I am also planning a new series which I will be working on as soon as Against the Ropes is finished—I’m one busy author!

Is there anything you would like to add?

I would like to thank Cheryl for hosting me today, and would like to wish everyone much success with their writing in 2013.


CMash said...

Thank you for sharing. Fantastic interview, very interesting. Great job!

Cindy McDonald said...

Good morning, it is very cold and snowy here in Pittsburgh but I have warm thoughts and wish everyone a happy and healthy 2013!

Lauren Carr said...

Great interview, Cindy. Carl Lugowski is my favorite character, too. I guess it's because he's a detective.

Love Dangerous Deception and can't wait for Against the Ropes, as well as your new series.

Gina @ Hott Books said...

This was a fun interview! Thanks for sharing!!