Michael Hicks Thompson Bio
Michael Hicks Thompson was birthed in his mother’s own bed. His family lived so far out on a farm in the woop woop, hospitals weren’t an option. A mid-wife was there with a bowl of hot water–so he was told. The family moved into the tiny town of Bentonia (Yazoo County) when Michael was five, youngest of four boys.
Being raised in such a small Mississippi town (population, 210), he claims to know a thing or two about strong southern women, alcoholic men, and quirky characters. I suppose that’s why he ran as fast as he could … to the South’s wildest party school at the time, Ole Miss. Only by the grace of God is he still alive … 23 broken bones from fights, football, and a couple of major Harley massages. He laid her down in the mountains of North Carolina. Not a pretty picture. Eight bones broke that time.
Marriage and grad school at the University of South Carolina for a masters’ degree in mass communication settled him down. (He claims God settled him down when He changed his heart forever.)
Michael moved to Memphis and started a one-man ad agency at age 27. The firm, Thompson & Company, grew to 87 employees in two cities—Memphis and Nashville. He was CEO / creative director / copywriter for over 30 years. The agency won more than its fair share of national and international booty for creativity. Michael sold the firm in 2011.
Novel writing started as a hobby, along with oil painting. He wrote, art directed, and published two graphic novels on the life of David from the Old Testament—DAVID—The Illustrated Novel *. Michael couldn’t figure out why God said David was a man after his own heart. So he wrote about it. Successfully.
Volume 2 won first place BEST GRAPHIC NOVEL and BEST INTERIOR DESIGN, 2012, from THE INTERNATIONAL BOOK AWARDS. Volume 1 won 2nd Best Graphic Novel of 2011 from the Independent Publisher Book Awards.
A novella received finalists awards in the Beverly Hills Book Awards and Clarion’s Mystery & Mayhem. In 2011 Michael penned a sci-fi thriller (JALA) that was serialized in a monthly magazine for an entire year. He’s re-writing and looking for a publisher or movie producer for this thriller.
Michael is a licensed sailboat captain (having sailed most of the Caribbean Islands many times) and scuba diver. He’s a Kairos team member (prison ministry); been to Cuba twice on door-to-door evangelism mission trips; been a featured speaker at large (500+) conventions; taught night classes at Memphis College of Art; and Sunday School for college/career singles. He’s an honorary deputy sheriff in Mississippi and Tennessee, and licensed to carry a concealed weapon.
He was King of Carnival Memphis in 1997. Michael is still in the business world as Board Chairman of a Mississippi Delta manufacturing company. (I know most of this minutia only because he made me include it.)
While he was fretting over writing The Rector, I told him, “You wrote advertising copy for thirty years! Holy dooly, man, you’ve been writing fiction for three decades!”
Now he really does write fiction—Christian novels that entertain, intrigue, and shine a light on his Jesus. (Who knows? Maybe one day Michael will convince me about this Jesus of his.)
I think he’s most proud of their three grown sons—all of them born-again Christians; two wonderful daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. Oh, I should’ve mentioned … he’s been married to the same fantastic lady (and my dear friend) for forty-three years. She’s a bigwig in the Garden Club of America. Tempe Adams Thompson. Michael’s proud of her.
Michael loves the works of C.S. Lewis, R.C. Sproul, Tim Keller, and J.I. Packer; and for fiction he likes to read books by Brandilyn Collins, Nelson DeMille, Laura Hillenbrand, Michael Crichton (RIP), and his friend, Carolyn Haines, who has written over 70 novels. Whew.
His four years in Oxford were wasted. And I don’t think he cared much for the great works of Faulkner. Evidently, Michael spent more time drinking cheap wine on Faulkner’s grave under full moon nights than reading the genius of the literary giant. The bloke lived directly across from Faulkner’s headstone.
Neither does Michael The Storyteller like the ‘filler’ in most of today’s mystery books: “Too many paragraphs upon paragraphs of superfluous character and setting detail. I ‘d rather keep my reader on a fast pace. There’s a certain amount of ‘backstory’ needed in the beginning, but no author wants his reader to put the book down until The End.”
Michael enrolled in two Media Bistro Master Novel Writing courses out of NYC. Caitlin Alexander, former editor with Random for eleven years, was the instructor. She edited his first mystery. He’s a member of the ACFW, Mystery Writers of America, The International Crime Writers Association, the Southern Writers Association, and more than I’m willing to include.
I do believe Michael should’ve been born next door to me, in Sydney. He has our down-under sense of humor, winner take all attitude. He really is the dinky-di from woop woop who learned how to spin a yarn as good as gold.
Well now … I’m pretty sick of writing about Michael. I’d rather write about his wife, Tempe, or me, for that matter; but he says there’s no more space. Rubbish.
I’m David Weekes, an Aussie ad man from Sydney and good friend of my good friend Michael. You can email me, firstname.lastname@example.org. I can answer any question you have about me. Hooroo.
- BTW, you shouldn’t miss the pic of Michael with Goliath and the ark of the covenant on this site of his. The crazy bloke had these life-size replicas made for a book signing tour. How ridiculous is that? I warn you … be careful. He’s dangerous.