In this featured conversation, the hosts Vito Scarnecchia and Patrick McAndrew, who have a personal connection with Mark Clifford dating back to their military days, provide a warm and nostalgic introduction to their guest. They highlight his dedication and service as both a Marine and a police officer, setting the stage for an intimate and engaging discussion.
Clifford reflects on his substantial military and police career, sharing anecdotes that reveal the camaraderie and the intense experiences that shaped him. His recounting of his final day on the police force is particularly evocative, likening it to a climactic movie scene, illustrating the dramatic end to his service and the beginning of a new chapter in his life.
This transition from active service to retirement was not just a change in occupation for Clifford, but a deeper, more personal evolution. He candidly discusses the effects of long-term exposure to stress and trauma, and the significance of understanding and fostering post-traumatic growth. This led him to engage with organizations aimed at helping veterans adjust to civilian life, an effort that seems to have been both healing and enlightening for him.
“Typhoon Coast,” Clifford’s literary endeavor, is described as an amalgamation of his life’s narratives—a fictionalized account that remains truthful to his personal experiences. He aims for authenticity in his depiction of military and police life, hoping to bridge the gap between these professions and the general public’s understanding of them. The character of Trent McShane, while a creation, is essentially a literary stand-in for Clifford, embodying the emotions and trials of his real-life counterpart.
The conversation also touches on Clifford’s writing process, a journey of self-discovery and skill development. He recounts moments of validation and inspiration, such as overhearing his wife unknowingly read an early draft of his book to their child, mistaking it for a published work. These experiences underscore the universal appeal and narrative strength he strives for in his writing.
Overall, the interview paints a picture of Mark Clifford as a man who has served his country with honor, faced the challenges that come with such service, and channeled those experiences into helping others and crafting a novel that seeks to enlighten as well as entertain.