Ghost Dog Inspiration:
The ghost dog in Spirit’s Key was originally inspired by Marisol, a former Puerto Rican street dog turned pet, who was viciously attacked by another dog and went missing. She belonged to Anindita, a dear friend of mine. Click here to read about Marisol. Warning! This blog requires tissues. I helped look for Marisol along with half the city of Boston (Marisol’s story ran in the Boston Globe). There are a lot of Puerto Rican rescue dogs in Boston who look like Marisol (at least to me). I couldn’t stop seeing her everywhere. I know my friend Anindita couldn’t either. I got this idea about losing a dog and seeing his or her ghost.
Wild Dog Inspiration
I moved to the hills in Los Angeles and had a few scary run ins with coyotes. Coyotes want to eat my little dog Leia so badly. Apparently, she smells delicious. They seek her out. Every spotting takes my breath away–reminds me of mortality, the wonder of nature and what it means to be a wild thing. Spirit’s story grew from these ideas.
Setting/ World Building Inspiration:
SPIRIT’S KEY is set on Bald Island, a fictional world with beaches, wild dogs, superstition and lore.
Even though Bald Island is a made-up, imaginary place, I drew inspiration from the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
The characters in the novel drink yaupon tea. You can read more about the real Yaupon Tea.
Curious about North Carolina’s hurricane history? I drew inspiration from hurricanes of the past. HURRICANES.
Want to know more about what it means to be a dingbatter?
Check out this video by NCLLP, Carolina Outer Banks Brogue Vocabulary