Behind the Scenes of The Limit

Years ago I heard a discussion on the radio or television about how much personal debt people were accumulating. One of the people involved in the discussion–and I can’t remember who it was or the exact words they used–said something to the effect of, ‘parents who accumulate large amounts of debt are mortgaging their children’s future.’ My mind took that idea to the extreme. What if children were really taken from home, locked away somewhere, and made responsible for their parents’ debt? The idea grew and changed until I came up with the basic premise for The Limit.

While working on The Limit, I did a little bit of research on child laborers in the early 1900s. I came across a fascinating, heartbreaking website featuring the photography of Lewis W. Hine. He spent four years documenting child laborers. Just take a minute to look at the faces of these young children.

Click here

These pictures bring me to tears every time I look at them. These were just little kids! They couldn’t go to school. Most of them couldn’t read. They had to work really hard in dangerous jobs for very little money. Their families needed that tiny bit of money so desperately that they sacrificed the welfare of their children. I wish I could say that child labor no longer exists in the world, but I can’t.