University of the Incarnate Word
The University of the Incarnate Word (UIW), is one of the leading faith-based universities in the country. It also has one of the more beautiful campuses I have seen in Texas.
Unlike state-funded universities, UIW's buildings are not a result of mass bond issuances; consequently the UIW buildings are of diverse design, and are quite reminiscent of top northeastern universities.
Besides its beauty, I chose UIW as Alison's employer because it is a leader among diversity in both its student body and faculty. I also felt it was a way of demonstrating Alison's flexibility and tendency toward acceptance in how she views the world. After all, she's an atheist teaching at a Catholic school.
I included a photo of UIW's pool. It's the setting for an amusing back-and-forth between Bryce and Alison, and its women's locker room is the site for one of the book's creepier scenes.
The Esquire Tavern was built in 1933 along the banks of the San Antonio River. It was erected in celebration of the end of Prohibition, and its decor pays tribute to the speakeasies prevalent during the era.
There are two pivotal scenes that take place in Esquire. The first is a little hard to read (and it wasn't too much fun to write), as we find Alison in an embarrassing situation less than five pages in.
In the second scene, the Esquire - and Bryce - are redeemed, and the reader gets to enjoy some amusing, albeit drunken, exchanges between Alison and Bryce.
San Antonio Museum of Art
I've been going to the San Antonio Museum of Art since I was in middle school. It has always been one of my favorite museums because of the eclectic exhibits, and the building itself is beautiful.
My wife and I are members, and it was during one of our visits that I got the idea to open Dying Forever in the Egyptian exhibit. It seemed ironic to begin a vampire book in a place where the dead are so neatly preserved.
“And I am done with my graceless heart. So tonight I'm gonna cut it out and then restart.”
-Florence + the Machine