My husband is reading Darkrooms and Safe Light.

This isn’t completely out of character for him. He’s read Art After 5 and half of Counterpoint, but he doesn’t typically read as I write, nor does he usually hound me for updates then offer to leave me alone so I can finish a chapter.

I asked him what was different about Darkrooms and he replied, “Everything. It’s dark, erotic, funny as hell, and the setting was brilliant. I mean, Atlantic City?”

Yes, Atlantic City. And it happened almost entirely by accident. I wanted to give Bella a job where she’d have to wear a uniform that would vaguely remind Edward of when he was human.  Making her a cocktail waitress was the logical way to accomplish this. My first thought was to set it in Las Vegas, but the weather there doesn’t favor vampires. Atlantic City also has casinos,  and it has months where it’s overcast more frequently than it is sunny.  So for my AU, I decided to head down the shore.

With the exception of legalized gambling, Atlantic City is nothing like Las Vegas.  Sure, the promise of wealth takes the form of millions of blinking lights, but it’s just a facade. Extreme poverty is right there beside it. The city itself is gritty and battle-weary, and the surrounding coastal forest has its own unique mythology involving monsters.

My husband knows my mind; we’ve been best friends for sixteen years. Once he read the first chapter, he knew exactly where I was taking this.

“Once you think about it, the Boardwalk is perfect for vampires,” he said.

Needless to say, I agreed.

Atlantic City, New Jersey

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  1. on 14 Jul 2010 at 12:00 pmLinsey

    I’ve mentioned it before, but I have to say it again. Your husband is my hero. :)


  2. on 15 Jul 2010 at 4:16 pmMeilleurCafe

    I loved your point about the number of tourists and transients who pour into Atlantic City providing an enormous pool of untraceable victims for Edward.

    The gloom and darkness of the story are a perfect companion to the actual atmosphere of Atlantic City. Bruce Springsteen captured the feel of it far more accurately than any Travel and Tourism brochure.


    Colleen reply:

    “everything dies, baby that’s a fact.
    but maybe everything that dies someday comes back…”


  3. on 30 Aug 2010 at 5:57 pmKristine K. R.

    I agree whole-heartedly with your husband – and also think that Atlantic City is the *perfect* place for a vampire… even the sparkly ones.

    I’ve just started reading this, btw…. been uber busy, with life and all…


    Colleen reply:

    Me, too. Time really does speed up the older we get. I miss the shit out of you, bb. Hope to catch up soon.