I'm writing a new contemporary romance series in 2017 and I thought you'd like to know a little about it. I can promise you the stories will be full of interesting characters and the usual amount of humor. But, for the first time, I'm setting my books outside of the UK.
Welcome To McClintock Island, Michigan
McClintock island is a privately owned island that sits smack-bam in the middle of Lake Huron, about a hairs breadth away from the Canadian border. In fact, some of the islanders are adamant that the northern tip of the island really belongs in Canada. In recent times, a tiny group of residents have set up home in the northern tip and have established Trudeau Township. They hope to eventually secede from the United States and become part of Canada. The fact that the township is mainly populated by women who are obsessed with Justin Trudeau is purely coincidental.
Here is a map of the island.
As you can see, the residents and owners haven't had a lot imagination when it came to naming places.
Three quarters of the island is taken up by hills (and bumps) that are covered in forest. The McClintocks' private estate takes up almost a quarter of the land mass, including McClintock cove and the garden area of the island. McClintock town currently boasts a rundown bar, a cheap diner with bad food, a school house with two students and a town hall that's being used as a grocery store. The old harbor is in disrepair and the island no longer acts as a stopping off point for passing cargo ships or wandering boats. With one ferry a week from the mainland and most homes sitting vacant, McClintock island has the feel of a ghost town. The population has been dwindling steadily over the past forty years, local industry (mainly fishing) has been abandoned and island amenities are few and far between. If something isn't done to turn the fortunes of the island around, it will die - along with its last few residents.
That's where the McClintock men come in.
But first, you must be dying to know how the island got into this state. Well, here's a little history.
A Short History Of McClintock Island
McClintock island was first claimed by the McClintock family when they arrived fresh from Scotland in the 1800s. For several generations it was owned and run by the family, mainly as a fishing hub and harbor rest for passing boats. In the 1980s the head of the McClintock family was a feckless rogue by the name of Fergus. He was a gambling, hard-drinking and womanizing fool of a man who lost the island in a bet, leaving his wife and four sons without any financial support. Not long after he lost the island, Fergus moved to the mainland and was never heard of again. Some say he died of syphilis in a whore house in Texas, but I think that's just wishful thinking.
To add insult to injury, Fergus lost the island to old man Eddie Trainor. The Trainors were long term business adversaries of the McClintocks. Eddie Trainor was a ruthless man, who was more interested in ruining the McClintocks than in nurturing the island. His family moved into McClintock House and proceeded to lord it over the island inhabitants. Fortunately, Eddie died not long after he won the bet, so the McClintocks didn't have to kill him. Unfortunately, his son, Marcus was just as bad as his father. Only, where Eddie was a ruthless and cunning businessman, Marcus was a spoiled brat who was more interested in appearing rich than in working for his money. Because of this, he ran through his inheritance pretty fast and had to sell the island. It went through two more owners, who did more damage than good, until the McClintock brothers were old enough, and had saved enough, to buy it back - but not without having to take on a business partner from outside the family to do it. (Something they plan to rectify as soon as the island starts generating money again. They hope...)
Present Day McClintock
So that's the state of play for McClintock island right now. The McClintock brothers brought it back into the family and are trying to turn it into a thriving community. Their business partner, Phoenix Enterprises, has promised to build an airstrip, turn McClintock House into a resort and establish a golf course. The McClintock brothers want the island to be a thriving tourist destination, the likes of which will give Mackinac island a run for its money. They want the harbor up and running, new families and businesses in the town, and a year round population that will give the old island life again.
But first, the McClintock men have to negotiate their strained relationship with their business partner. Working together is proving difficult as the company representative has a stormy history with McClintock island - and with the youngest McClintock brother, in particular.
So that's it! McClintock island, coming your way in 2017. What do you think?
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