When I first got the idea for the story, Jameson did not end up with the girl that he ends up with at the end of Night Sky.
Jameson's parents are based on an awesome couple my husband and I knew when we lived in Las Vegas. They had one of the nicest houses in the neighborhood behind the apartments where we lived. He was a dealer at a casino, and she was a waitress. Both had worked in the back, but made more money with all the tips while working in the front. We used to see her leaving for work about 10 PM wearing almost nothing, climbing in her car, and taking off. They were way cool.
Sky really had to be the opposite of Sarah, but I didn't know what she looked like until I wrote the scene where Jameson drives up behind her. That first scene between Jameson and Sky wrote itself, and it was cool to learn about who she was as the scene progressed.
I'm third generation Alaskan (almost fourth), and most of my family still lives in Southeast Alaska where the Tlingit people live. When I was little (and to this day) their drumming and dances are my favorite of the many cultures of Alaska Natives. I've spent hours in the parks in Sitka and Ketchikan, and never got tired of the massive totems there.
My parents own a company that installs gym floors (yes, I know how to install a gym floor, as well as how to paint game lines and logos) and it gave me the opportunity to be in a LOT of native villages all over the state. Many times we had to bring in all our own food, and slept in the school because it was the only public building. I was in Manokotak a few years ago, and the native language of Inuit is still the first language spoken for these kids, and there is one phone for the community. This is changing with the spread of hand-held satellite phones, but I love that there are still places like that in the U.S.
There's talk in the book about Native Corporations versus Reservations. Alaska has only one reservation. The Native people up here formed corporations, which gave them a lot more rights and control over their land than most Native Americans, if not all. It's a very cool thing. My sister and her husband just adopted a native baby, and had to get permission from the tribal council - they work very hard to preserve the cultural heritage.
I put In-N-Out Burger in almost all my books so I can live vicariously through my characters. The chances of one ever making it to Alaska are very, VERY slim.