Ol’ Man River event

Soon, (THURSDAY, July 18, 2024) I’ll be setting up at the Munsinger/Clemens Gardens – for its yearly Art Fair in the Gardens. Such beautiful flowers, trees, shrubs, and many different water features are set up by the slow-moving Mississippi River, flowing south to the Gulf of Mexico in Louisianna.

Path along the Mighty Misssissippi in Clearwater where steamboats docked.

I was raised near Old Man River. It has my heart and soul and is part of every book I’ve written except for “Steppes to Neu-Odessa,” about the first German Russians to come to the Midwest and settle in Yankton County, Dakota Territory. My second book was a college work, “Postcards from the Old Man,” a sort of memoir of living on Warner Lake and near the great river that I realized while I was away from my water routes, I still felt the Mississippi flowing in my veins. But I chuckle at others who read the title and snicker, thinking I am referring to my father–or worse–frown as I assume they think the title is showing disrespect to him. Of course, it isn’t. It’s more of a coming-of-age story.

“All Around Clearwater” and the Minnesota Main Street Women series, “Scruples & Drams, “Pins & Needles,” and my latest, hot off the press, “Where Two Rivers Meet,” exhibit the strength, courage, and wisdom each of my protagonists feels as they rely on the infamous river’s power to help them make life-changing decisions.

Daughter of the Middle Border – Cynthia Frank-Stupnik (cynthiafrankstupnik.com)

Don’t forget, July 18, 2024, Munsinger-The Munsinger/Clemens Gardens – The Jewel of St. Cloud, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  1515 Riverside Dr SE, Saint Cloud, MN 56304

I’ll leave you with this wonderful song from “Showboat,” “Ol’ Man River” https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=old%20man%20river%20videos&FORM=VDQVAP&mid=A6DE485C76DA5D8E30E3A6DE485C76DA5D8E30E3&view=detail&ru=%2Fsearch%3Fq%3Dold%20man%20river&rvsmid=E4277E4DB06BEF6014C7E4277E4DB06BEF6014C7&ajaxhist=0

Grandma Ina (again…but seriously, I loved that woman)


Shared with Public

I’ve talked about my grandmother before. She was a teacher and earned her first certificate in Iowa not far from where she lived in Bassett, Iowa. She moved to Minnesota in the late 19 teens when she joined the rest of her family that had moved to Sartell. In order to teach, she had to retake some classes at the St. Cloud Normal School to become recertified before teaching first out in Watkins, MN, and finally at Watab (her name is listed on the school walls where it is now located in the Benton County Fairground).
Before she left Iowa though, Grandma also made history when she attended and played organ for the Little Brown Church in the Vale at Nashua, Iowa. Her name is on the honor roll of organists who served the church. https://www.bing.com/videos/riverview/relatedvideo…
For every family gathering on the Potter/Johnson side, Thanksgiving, Christmas, weddings, and funerals, our family sings, THe Church in the Wildwood,” a tribute to our joint heritage.
Two pictures below: Frank-Stupnik wedding day 1971 in Clearwater, MN (my maiden name for those who do not know is Frank and I married a Frank).
One teacher to the other FUTURE teacher: I remember her hand gestures. Grandma is aiming to give me a kiss. Of course, that is my new husband, Frank. The next picture is the Little Brown Church in Nashua, Iowa. And of course, the last picture of Grandma on her graduation day.
Do you have family landmarks? Where are they? I’m sure my audience on Facebook and Instagram would love to know.
My next selling and signing event is June 15 in Avon. I will be attending for the first time Avon’s Spunktacular Days. From 9-3 I’ll be in or near the park where Garrison Keillor will be attending and speaking. I hope I get a moment to see him! Fingers crossed. https://www.facebook.com/events/1541500716764888/?acontext=%7B%22event_action_history%22%3A[%7B%22mechanism%22%3A%22search_results%22%2C%22surface%22%3A%22bookmark_search%22%7D]%2C%22ref_notif_type%22%3Anull%7D
By the way, please share my post. This will help others find me and help me grow my audience. Thank you so much.
May be an image of 3 people, wedding and text that says 'Cynthia and Frunk Stupnik with Ind Potter Johnson December t8, 1971'May be an image of text
May be an image of text that says 'Ina Potter 1919, Nashua, LA'

Ho! Ho! So my season begins

I wonder if you have enjoyed the spring like I have.  The weather, despite some rain–we needed it–has been so lovely.  I haven’t been writing much, but I’ve been doing lots of research–my happy and safe zone.  I feel so snug looking up information and reading manuscripts.   Of course, for 6 weeks, I was healing from fractured ribs, and sitting cozily and happily in my Lazy-boy.  Now, I begin the selling of my wares. My first event is this Saturday, May 18, 2024, at the Sartell Community Center, hosted by Epic Events.  Doors open at 9 a.m. and close at 2 p.m.  Along with my other novels and histories, I’ll be presenting for the first time the third in my Minnesota Main Street Women’s series, Where Two Rivers Meet. which joins my other two novels, and to become a trilogy.  I’ve also written , , and .



Here is the event information: Cindy Stupnik – I’ll be set up, selling, and signing my books this… | Facebook

I’ll keep you up to date as each event comes to the forefront.






“A change of seasons begins in the heart.”

“A change of seasons begins in the heart.” Cindy Stupnik

Changing is a constant if one is a writer. Change of topic, change of thought, change of address–even if it is only related to the thought process.

I said after I finished my last book, “Where Two Rivers Meet,” the third in my Minnesota Main Street Women’s series, I wanted to write some poetry and research my family again. I published my first book, “Steppes to Neu-Odessa,” back in 1996, as a love link to my dad, the late great Harold Frank, grandson of Germans who lived in Russia for a few generations before coming to America in the latter 19th century. I revised the first book and re-published it a few years later with updates my sister and I accessed via the Internet. Over the years and while delving into other writing projects, I kept wanting to get back to researching my dearly departed. In addition, I knew what I wanted to say about my fourth novel and who I wanted to write about. All of this takes research. It is what I love the most. For me, it is like taking a journey into lands I may or may not have previously traveled.

Change–when–researching my ancestry is difficult–my brain has not spread its wings so broadly for a long time. Keeping dates and people straight (How many ways can one spell John? Johan, Johann, Johannes–as if the name stood alone without adding on Christian, George or Peter, and sometimes, the only way to know you might be close to the right ancestor is by looking at birth, baptism, marriage, or death dates, if they exist) is not as easy as it used to be. My brain isn’t as elastic as it used to be.

But I love the search for the prize–a hint, or if I am really lucky a black and white picture of that person whose curly hair I might have inherited or a weirdly squeezed together toenail that resembles an avian phalange that hasn’t quite evolved into a human toe yet. (I also have weird thumbs. One deceased relative actually drew hers on her letter to me to see how we compared.)

I’ve taken my challenge to write a poem, need to pen more, and have started researching my next gal for the Minnesota Main Street Women series. Here I will travel back for a while to the east coast–specifically to Connecticut and Massachusetts before working in the Minnesota area in the 1920s, 30s, or ?????

As I said before, change!!!! My books are showing up in the nicest places. I know that Buffalo Books & Coffee in Buffalo, Minnesota, is selling them —because I dropped off a number of copies. I will do a reading, selling, and signing there sometime soon. I am signing another contract with Paramount Center for the Arts in St Cloud on St. Germain where the gift store has been carrying my books for a few years. Clear Water Outfitting, downtown Clearwater, Minnesota, is carrying “Around Clearwater.” In January, I was told by the Stowe Historical Society in Vermont that they asked the Bear Paw Bookstore to carry my books because my “Where Two Rivers Meet,” included many people who moved from Vermont to Minnesota. And NOW, J’s Junction in Becker, Minnesota, at 14087 Bank Street will be carrying my Minnesota Main Street Women series. In fact, next Thursday, May 2nd, from 3-5:30, I will be selling and signing at their event “Wine & Sign.” Come see me, buy books and anything else they have in their wonderful shop.

More changes….
I have a few new events I’ll be showing up at in order to “SELL & SIGN” throughout the summer and year. A couple events I have decided not to attend.

One new event is Saturday, May 18, in Sartell, MN, at the new community center–more to come on that. So, I ‘ll announce my events before they happen with dates and times before they happen.

I’ve included a short biography, a listing of my books available for sale, a summary of each book, and the price.   Please contact me if you’d like to buy one.   I can send you prices for the book, the shipping, taxes, and final cost.  cynthiafrankstupnik.com, cstupnik@outlook.com, and or through Facebook.  

Cynthia’s Book Bio

Another nice interview and a reminder

Locals around Clearwater will be able to read the paper copy of the lovely article Penny Leuthard wrote about my latest novel, Where Two Rivers Meet.  Many thanks, Penny.  I appreciate all the coverage the press has given me, from Annandale Advocate, Monticello Times, to Kelly Cordes from WJON, to The Patriot News article that was just released.https://patriotnewsmn.com/news/3rd-novel-about-historical-clearwater-woman-is-released

I also want to remind everyone that I’ll be speaking at the Civil War Roundtable at the Stearns History Museum.  https://www.stearnshistorymuseum.org/  The title of my presentation is (Oh, I know it is a mouthful!)  Minnesota Main Street Women: The Civil War and Dakota Conflict Through the Eyes of the Protagonists and Characters.  The directors assure me that the event is free and “guests are welcome.”  I will also have my books with me to sign and sell.

No photo description available.

JUST A REMINDER: In 5 short days, I’ll be talking to the Civil War Roundtable at the Stearns History Museum. I think it starts at 3:30, but I’d make sure to be there a few minutes before. Also, the title of my presentation is “Cynthia Frank-Stupnik’s Main Street Women: The Civil War and Dakota Conflict Through the Eyes of her Protagonists and Characters.”

I know that is a mouthful. The event starts at 3:15 on Tues, February 13.

Hope to see a few of you there!




Launching “Where Two Rivers Meet”

Not many people remember her. Yet, she stepped out of her safe and normal to take a chance on change. A recent widow, she could be taken care of by her family, or she could hope to find a mate to take care of her and her son.
Abigail Robinson Camp had a desire for adventure and a spirit to chance it on her own. Yet, in 1885, a trip from Vermont to the wilds of Minnesota Territory held enough challenges but being the only female taking care of a log-cabin hotel surrounded by a camp full of men kept her on her guard and busy. Early town people kept the stories about her strength and wisdom alive despite the many deprivations they all faced.
Come this Sunday, January 14th, 2024, at 1:00 to hear a bit more about Abigail’s story. Help us celebrate the GIRLS as she joins Jennie Phillips, “Scruples & Drams,” and Maude Porter, “Pins & Needles,” as we launch my third in the trilogy of Minnesota Main Street Women, “Where Two Rivers Meet.” We will share a few stories, a little history, and some refreshments, including the celebration of cutting the cake, always the highlight of my parties.

May be an image of 1 person and text that says 'Abigail Robinson Camp Porter'

“Where Two Rivers Meet”: Book Launch

May be an image of text that says 'Where Two Rivers Meet Sl d aim Cynthia nthia Frank- Stupnik'

I am pleased to invite you to the launch of “Where Two Rivers Meet” on Sunday afternoon, January 14th, at 1 p.m. We will meet at the United Methodist Church in Clearwater, Minnesota. Come join us for a little music, and a little talk about Clearwater history, Minnesota Main Street Women, especially, the protagonist of the new novel, the first woman of Clearwater, Abigail Camp Porter. We will share some prizes, a chance to see all my books, and of course, an opportunity to share a piece of cake.

Holiday Cheer!

One week away!       https://www.makersmarketstcloud.com/?fbclid=IwAR17l9jpWmekWqEyAiU-ly8htBZ3yoxNT9E5xj11KwyAGs3jFh7LV97knNI   I’ll be in the hallway waiting for you. I love this event, the makers who are part of this unique event, and our host, Danielle.
I can’t promise that “WHERE TWO RIVERS MEET” will be there with me, though. The book is finished but at the publishers. Proof it is on its way is below!!! Don’t worry. l’ll devise some type of scheme to get you a book somehow, someway, and as soon as possible.
I’ll be bringing a new look, including a logo, to promote my Minnesota Main Street Women trilogy, my past writing, and my future.
As soon as I know the date of delivery of “Where Two Rivers Meet,” I’ll also set up a book launch date.
I want to thank all of you. The book has been long in coming, and that I’m sorry about. But through your encouragement, and you know who you are, thoughts, and prayers, I recovered from a series of sicknesses that almost took me out completely. Miracles do exist. I came back to the book and new direction I was taking with it. Thank you. I hope to see you soon.
May be an image of text

Finally finished

I feel like a rudderless ship, a childless mother, a banana-less banana bread (I wish I knew of more idioms). I’ve sent my latest novel, “Where Two Rivers Meet” to the publisher. I don’t know if I should jump for joy, sing, or look for a new project (I have plenty of things to do.). I feel like celebrating, but food is in the crockpot for supper. I have the weirdest feeling.  I am also changing a few other items: a new business card, new informational poster, and a a new way to display my books.  In addition, I will be making some changes to my webpage (IF I CAN!) .
A little preview drawn by son Todd of what is to come:
May be art