While visiting an art exhibit one day, Gregory Maguire says he stumbled across a painting of “a person of great compassion circling and enfolding someone who needed help.” He met the artist, Andy Newman, two weeks later, and eventually (in 2004) married him. Their wedding took place just after same-sex marriage was legalized in Massachusetts. Not long afterwards, they adopted three children: Luke and Alex from Cambodia and Helen from Guatemala.
One reason why Maguire in particular felt inclined to adopt, other than the fact that he could not biologically have children with his partner, was because of his challenging childhood. Maguire’s mother died in childbirth, and his husband Andy’s mother died about ten years ago. This background of familial stress made Andy and Gregory want to provide a stable home environment for their children. Maguire disagrees with the objection that a homosexual couple could potentially cause the same kind of negative stress on a family that living in a single-parent household does. He says that his family operates like any other.
Maguire did a good deal of traveling during his life, from living in London to Dublin to Massachusetts. While he was living in London, he found inspiration to write his most well-known book, Wicked. Maguire says that the life of Adolf Hitler, and what he had heard and seen of young crime in the London area, inspired him to reflect on the nature of crime and of evil. This encouraged him to think about one of the iconic evil characters, the Wicked Witch of the West.