The story behind “Possum Kingdom”

150446327_9cdc971c2aThe idea for “Possum Kingdom” really started 20 or so years ago, when as a college student I visited Harvard Square for the first time in about 10 years. As a child I’d been fascinated by the punk-rock “Pit Rats” I saw loitering around the concrete rings that rimmed the Harvard T station; as a young adult, a decade later, I was even more fascinated to find them still there. What if, I thought, they were the same punks? What if they were vampires, never aging?

I was dating a closeted goth at the time, and I’m sure he influenced my thinking along those lines. Still, the idea stuck with me over the years. When I speculated my idea to a friend, her response was less than enthusiastic. The Twilight movies had just come out, and vampires, she felt, were overdone. “Now, shapeshifters, on the other hand….” she said.

The actual story wouldn’t come until a few years after that. It would take a pet rat, a new job that regularly brought me to Harvard Square, and a couple of highly charged election seasons to bring the full idea to fruition. Even then, writing the story surprised me. I’d always been a crime and horror fiction author; what was this urban fantasy spilling forth onto the page?

Yet here it was, and I had so much fun writing it that I decided to keep exploring the fantasy genre. I hope you’ll join me on my journey.

Featured photo credit: 060519pit2 via photopin (license)

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