Monday, January 22, 2007

The Dirt About Graveyards!

N.J. Walters

Cemetery…graveyard…the mere words conjure up all sorts of images of dark foggy nights, full moons, headstones, vampires and ghosts. But they can also be places of calm, contemplation an even romance.

How do I know?

Simple. I lived in one!

I can hear you all screaming that no one lives in a graveyard, but I did and so did the caretaker and his family. It was actually in my younger years and I was boarding there while I was going to school. It was a homey, two-story home that faced the road on the front side, but was surrounded by headstones on the other three. The view from my window was gently rolling hills dotted with white stones.

Every day I’d trundle down through the twisting paths and exit the iron gate on the far side of the graveyard to catch the bus. And every evening I’d trudge back through it in the dark, winding my way past the familiar headstones after a long day at school. I always remember my great aunt telling me that it wasn’t the dead that one had to worry about, but the living. I can honestly say that this particular graveyard was a settled one. It almost felt welcoming, as if the departed didn’t mind me wandering my way past them every day, as if they didn’t mind the company.

Some of the graves were quite old and had sad stories to tell. I remember one that had several members of the same family buried in the large plot within a few days of one another. Obviously an epidemic of some sort, probably curable now, but not so in the 1800’s. Others were of men lost at sea or taken during the first and second world wars. Then there was the occasional one of a child or of someone who’d lived until their ninety-first year. Each stone had a story all its own.

Okay, so I can all hear you asking yourself that all-important question—how can a graveyard by romantic?

Well, I happened to be living there when I met the man who would later become my husband. At the time we were both still in our late teens and neither of us had a car. So, when he brought me home from our first date, where do you think we went? That’s right, the graveyard. It was peaceful and quiet and it’s where we shared out first real kiss after our first date.

Is it any wonder I love to write paranormal romance? The dark, the forbidden, the lure of what is beyond death is what drives authors to delve into the realms of the paranormal. There, the boundaries are blurred and anything is possible. Vampires, werewolves, ghosts and things that go bump in the night. There are a million tales to tell and some of them will come from me.

But then what else can you expect from a woman who lived in a graveyard?

About the Author:
Check out my erotic vampire series at:

If you want to know more about me, just check out my website at http://www.njwalters.com and my blog at http://www.njwalters.blogspot.com .

Or you can join my newsletter at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/awakeningdesires/ .

Disclaimer, cause we have to: The opinions of guest bloggers do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Mandy M Roth and Michelle M Pillow. (Want to be a guest blogger?)

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22 comment(s):

Thanks for stopping by, NJ! Wow, I'm telling ya, this is a book yelling to be written! I don't know if I would be freaked out or not--I'd like to think not, but hmmmm....

GREAT BLOG! Thank you!!!!


By Blogger Michelle Pillow, at 7:12 AM  

I agree with Michelle on this one! And for me, I don't think I could ever live in or even near a graveyard. The Italian in me would freak out. Of course I never thought I would be able to live in a haunted house and I do right now, lol.
Loved the article, NJ!

By Blogger Melissa, at 7:50 AM  

Thanks, Michelle. I'm planning on using it in a book. I'm just waiting for the right characters to come along. :-)

Glad you enjoyed the article, Melissa. I've lived in a haunted house and a haunted apartment, but I'd take the graveyard over them any day. Much more peaceful. *g*

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 8:00 AM  

WOW NJ how interesting is that. I can just picture a book coming out of that story.

Yep paranormal romances should definitely spew from someone who has lived in a graveyard.

I visit my dad's grave which is tucked into a little garden under a beautiful tree with some windchimes. There's a bench there and I like to sit on it and just listen to the windchimes and the birds chirping. Very peaceful.


By Blogger Sugar-Girl, at 8:37 AM  

Hey, Candy. Some graveyards can be peaceful. I actually like the older ones than the newer ones. They seem more settled somehow.

And I plan to keep on writing paranormals. I can't seem to stop. *g*

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 8:50 AM  

How cool! I love it. You definitely have to write the story. I've always had a lot of paranormal things happening around me and enjoy reading about other peoples experiences.

By Blogger Nicole Austin, at 8:52 AM  

Hands-down THE best Halloween party I ever went to was held a cemetery, owned by the family of my husband's best friend.

I think right after than was when I saw my first gray hairs, but it was worth it. :D

By Blogger Carolan Ivey, at 9:13 AM  

So you had a haunted apartment and house, must be some storyworthy ideas there, too. Did you ever feel ghosts at the graveyard?

By Blogger Cathy, at 9:23 AM  

Spooky romantic setting! I can just picture that. What a great story, NJ, thank for sharing it.

By Blogger Charli, at 9:28 AM  

Nathanial Hawthorne took his wife-to-be on dates spent strolling through the graveyard. (In Salem, Mass, the second oldest graveyard in the US.) Great post!

By Blogger Nancy Henderson, at 9:50 AM  

Hey, Nic. It was cool. The funny thing though, is at the time, it was just where I lived. I didn't think anything of it.

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 11:43 AM  

Hey, Carolan. Now, that sounds like a story! Must have been one heck of a party.

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 11:44 AM  

Never felt anything frightening in the graveyard, Cathy. But one of the places I lived...yeah, lots of scary material for me to use someday in my writing.

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 11:46 AM  

Thanks, Charli. Hubby and I both remember it fondly. *g*

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 11:46 AM  

I didn't know that, Nancy. It's actually a quiet place for a couple to be alone, especially when they're young and don't have their own homes.

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 11:49 AM  

What a wonderful story, NJ! Living in New England, I've learned a certain fondness for graveyards. There are more cemeteries here than I have ever seen or imagined existed. We walked around the Salem graveyard one weekend and it was peaceful and quiet. History seemed to resonate with each step we took. And of course, it was romantic because it was shared hand-in-hand with my sweetie.

Thank you for making sure I got over here to read your guest blog and thank you Michelle for having such a cool place to blog!


By Blogger TK Winters, at 3:52 PM  

I wish I could take all the credit, but Mandy Roth is the other half of my brain here. She actually put the blog all together--*clapping for mandy*

Nathanial Hawthorne-- how interesting for a date, lol, mine took me dancing on our first one--(MISTAKE!!! Yeah, my dancing is...er, well)

Anyone watch Haunted Mansion? Yeah, I know it's a disney, but I want to live in a house like that---minus the talking head ball.

Thanks ladies for stopping by! And thanks NJ for the great topic!

By Blogger Michelle Pillow, at 4:02 PM  

Thanks, TK! You're right when you say that a cemetery, especially an older one, resonates with history. The one I lived in was like that.

And I'm grateful to Mandy and Michelle for having me here!

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 4:22 PM  

I'm glad my hubby never took me dancing on our first date. LOL

Thanks to both of you for having me here today. I really enjoyed it!

*clapping hands for both Mandy and Michelle*

By Blogger N.J.Walters, at 4:24 PM  


Thanks so much for sharing this with us! I agree with everyone, this is a story I'd love to read!

I agree, I think graveyards can be very romantic in a different kind of way. Some of them, the older ones, have a certain over grown English garden type feel to them.

When I lived in the country, many of my friends farmhouses had small/mini family graveyards. They'd long since stopped burying their loved ones in them but their ancestors were there. That was certainly a different experience for me, coming from the city. I'm thinking...uh...they really frown on us burying Uncle Joe out back.

By Blogger mandymroth, at 5:08 PM  

I tell my husband all the time how much I'd love to live near one. One of the older ones. I just thinks their is something hauntingly beautiful about them. Peaceful. He doesn't quite see it that way. In fact, I think he's sure I'm insane but he thankfully just grins and goes on his way.

By Blogger mandymroth, at 5:10 PM  

LOL Mandy, you may be insane, but he married you... so really what does that make him? LMAO, I tell my DH that, so don't you dare poke holes in that theory.

I agree with the English Garden aspect. Hauntingly Beautiful. And with TK about the peacefulness. Hey, Mandy, TK lives in England, we might have to go take a "research" trip....hey, why is she running away with packing boxes tucked under her arm? Wait a minute, why does everyone run away when I say that?

I keep telling everyone not to worry. When I go, I'll be coming back to haunt them. It's more of a threat, really, lol.

Thanks ladies for stopping by!

By Blogger Michelle Pillow, at 6:15 AM  

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