When I was twenty one years old, I was in the Air Force and was selected to go before a board that consisted of Air Force, Navy, Army and Marines. I had had three years of college and a Marine Sargent asked me, “What is the difference between college and the armed forces?”
After thinking about it for a moment I answered, “I would have to say discipline and community.”
I won that award.
The point is that military service is not a single soul exploring and finding themselves. It is a community of souls with purpose. That is what I try to recreate in my books – that community.
Allie McMurphy is a fudge shop and hotel owner on Mackinac island. Even though her family has owned the hotel and fudge shop for over a hundred years, she didn’t grow up there. So when she takes over the business, it becomes her purpose to become a part of the community.
It takes discipline to get up at 4 a.m. every day and create fudge. I don’t know if you remember, but there was an old Dunkin Donuts commercial where the baker got up in the wee hours and stumbled off to work. “Time to make the donuts.”
Even faced with murder and mayhem, Allie never forgets her purpose. She’s up making fudge. While that might seem trivial to compare her to those on the front lines, I think about all the members of the military community. Those who teach, train, cook, and drive are no more less important to the whole.
I know we’ve all faced being the new member of a community. It happens every time you change duty stations. Still we manage to connect with each other. It’s working on that fine art of connection that drives this series. Allie struggles at first, as we all do, but over time she builds her own family.
Finding humor in hardship is survival mechanism that is a strong part of what we do. Allie is no exception. I’ve written her as a sort of straight man to the shenanigans of those around her. She finds comfort in her pets who are a of gateway to connection with the community.
So, come and escape your troubles for a time. Make some fudge, sit back in a comfortable chair and enjoy Allie’s journey to fit in to her new community.
Thank you for your service. Yes, spouses serve, too.
If you want to get your hands on Nancy Coco’s latest Candy-Coated Mystery, Forever Fudge!, click on the cover below!