Tracy’s town has a long history of racism. How does that factor into the story?
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There’s a misconception of small towns being safe communities that are devoid of “crime.” Spaces where good folk can find community. A small town was a perfect model to how ingrained racism can persist in communities.
I chose Galveston, Texas, because Texas is a well-known death penalty state. Galveston is also most famously known for the place where the roots of celebrating Juneteenth began.
In June 19, 1865, Union soldiers landed at Galveston, Texas, with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free—two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation. Galveston operated as a symbolic location that would have an entrenched history worth exploring.
I also wanted to have the story to reflect how Tracy’s family were evacuees from Hurricane Katrina, and how difficult it is to pick up as a family when you don’t have generational wealth and resources.