When I began writing “Mexican Brick,” I planned to build a frame around it—Garza coming back to the apartment complex years after the action, seeing it much unchanged though now with different occupants…then falling back into the narrative of that celebrated youthful summer…then closing with—something. Some sort of contemporary action. I never figured out what—never had to—because as the narrative developed, with its cycle of violence and betrayal, it became apparent that the frame was unnecessary. The action from the past stood on its own and did not need mediation.
I wanted to write a ghost story, and this is what happened: the ghost flittered away, leaving behind a bunch of people sitting around an apartment complex during a humid drowsy Austin summer, and the complex itself in many ways became the most important character.