A few months ago, when I was writing up Blood Cries Up, I did a cemetery tour with my friend Greg E (to whom Blood Cries up is dedicated) in Portsmouth, Virginia. (I talk about this a bit more on Torquere's livejournal page)
I love old cemeteries and looking at the gravestones. When we got back to Greg's place, his mom found a copy of her Recording Angel for me, which discusses the "Symbolic Iconography of Victorian Tombstones."
(I adore Greg's parents, if I haven't said so before. They're exceptionally lovely people and I've been very pleased to have them in my life; so much so that I named characters after them. Keep an eye out in the first few months of 2014 for my novel, Roll, for a guest star appearance from Gloria and Lionel.)
This particular stone, for one Richard Cox, aged 77 includes finger pointing upward - guiding the way to heaven, an obelisk, symbolizing eternity and infinity, and a mourning drape, which were used on doors and lintels to let visitors know there was a death in the family.
The sea shell, to the left of the stone, is a new life/resurrection symbol, similar to Easter Eggs and tend to be more prevalent in harbor towns. (This cemetery is less than a mile from the Craford Bay/Harbor Park area. Quite a lot of shipping goes on in this town at the mouth of the James River.)
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For the next 2 weeks, I'll be bouncing around, doing blog tours and talking about my experiences with death, writing this story, graveyards, ghosts, and whatnot.
(It's possible you may have to sign up to be able to see the Livejournal post; if that's the case, I may cross-post that entry here...)
In either case; I'm giving away from Halloween Swag to celebrate this short story, including several of these soy tarts. I have Whipped Pumpkin and Kettle Corn, both from Raven Hollow Candles.
One lucky reader will win a box of Halloween stuff, and four runners up will get a tart with the book cover!
And here's your Rafflecopter form thingie!
a Rafflecopter giveaway