Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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It’s Thursday, let’s Throwback!

Today I want to throw it back to 2015 I wrote a book that would change so many things in my writing adventure. Check out this nice little emblem I was honored with for Tuscany.

And this was out of over 950 entries!

Tuscany then led me down the traditional publishing route with a great publisher, Solstice Publishing. I was so excited as I signed that contract and began that part of my publishing journey.

Signing publishing contract!

Then in 2019, I took the ownership of my manuscript back and started a new journey. As you can see, Tuscany has taken me so many places, not to mention to Italy in my writing. I discovered so much through writing this novel and added a strong item to my bucket list, a trip to Tuscany. One day… But for now, I’ll stay rooted to the ground.

Tuscany

***Tuscany made it to the top 55 of 985 books in the SYTYCW contest through Harlequin***

Sometimes life leads us on a different path… Fall in love with Tuscany as you follow Lana on the adventure of a lifetime… When Lana Daniels, a simple girl from Georgia inherits a large olive farm in Tuscany, her world is turned upside down. Then she meets Romeo Russo, the farm’s foreman, the most handsome and infuriating man she had ever met. Romeo loves the farm and is afraid that Lana will ruin everything if she stays. But as he gets to know her, he can’t imagine the place without her. Just when he thinks that they can have something together, she finds out that she has three months to decide whether to stay in Italy or sell her grandmother’s legacy.
As accidents start to happen on the farm, Romeo and Lana try to figure out who is behind it all. The more they work together, the closer they get. When a lie tears Lana and Romeo apart, Lana disappears leaving Romeo confused. Can she stay away or will she sell the farm and never look back?.
Tuscany made it to the Top 55 out of 905 of Harlequin’s 2015 So You Think You Can Write Contest…

So, I hope you fall in love with a bit of Tuscany in this novel. I know I did!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Deadlines or Procrastination!

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Deadlines… A writers nemesis, but necessary. As an Accountant I have many deadlines to meet, and as a writer, I also have them. They surround me and some days I feel overwhelmed. But I love what I do on both fronts, so I push toward the next deadline with zeal.

But, procrastination also plays a part. As I’m procrastinating now by writing this blog. Sometimes I work best with a looming deadline. Then other times, a chill runs up my spine as the anxiety fills me.

As writers, we set release dates for our work, then work toward them. It’s like a means to an end. If we don’t set a deadline, then where will our work go? I do a schedule every year that sets deadlines for the draft, the editing, and the release. This is setup by evaluating the work itself. Is it to be a full length novel or a short novella? I calculate the words per day, but I manage to add some empty days that allow for procrastination, but still have me meeting my deadline.

What about you? How do you handle deadlines?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You!


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When writing is hard… Push through it!

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Hit a wall with your current project? At a loss for words, literally? Yep, I’ve been there and other writers have too. The words stop… The creative juices reach a dam and stop… It’s like your internal hard drive crashes…

Push past that wall…

Everyone hits a wall, it’s only human. It’s how you react to that sudden wall standing in front of you that counts. So, here’s a couple of things I do when that wall jumps out and blocks my path.

1: Step back… Yes, step back. If you’re at a wall, then you need to clear your head, and redirect back to the project. When this happens to me, I’ll put that project aside and bring out an upcoming project to outline or even create some ads to inspire me.

2: Go back and read from the beginning of the project. Reintroduce yourself to the characters… Fall back in love with the story…

3: Don’t give up! Even though it seems like you’ve lost the battle, you haven’t. You’ve hit a wall that all writers hit. Push past it! Don’t let it control you. You’ve got this.

Now, get to writing and know that there will be obstacles, but you have the power to push through them. You’re a writer and that’s what you do. So write!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

P.S.: Don’t forget that Marina’s Story is coming out on Saturday.

Love-Marinas-Story-Journal-ebook/dp/B08DFGK8JB


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Pumpkin Spice Time!

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Good Monday morning! It’s that time of year where pumpkins are everywhere. Which means pumpkin spice time! For those that have followed my blog, you know that I love pumpkin spice, but there are some things that don’t need to be pumpkin spice flavored.

Now, I enjoy pumpkin spice lattes, creamer, cake, coffee, cookies, pop tarts, and other things. But I’ve tried some things that just don’t make the count for me. Pumpkin spice cereal was ok, but didn’t want it again. Then I saw pumpkin spice mac & cheese, we won’t even go there… Someone gave me some pumpkin spiced candy and well, the first trash can I pass, it got tossed. I still shudder at some of the things I’ve tried with pumpkin spice in it.

So, what do you like with pumpkin spice? What have you tried that just didn’t make the cut?

Happy Fall Ya’ll!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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The great debate – creamer or not!

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Sunday is so sweet. After Church we always come in, eat lunch and take a nice nap. Then I get to writing and grab a cup of coffee. If you haven’t noticed, I don’t need an excuse to drink coffee.

With that said, there’s a huge debate out there and no, I’m not being political, far from it. I’m talking about the debate over creamer or no creamer.

Some avid coffee connoisseurs say that if you put creamer in your coffee, that it’s ruined. But others say that creamer makes the coffee. What do you say?

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Me? Well, it’s up to my mood. For most of my life I’ve used creamer, but in the last couple of years I’ve grown to love coffee without creamer. But I still love creamer too. Of course, this time of year, I lean toward Pumpkin Spice of course. Then around Christmas, it’s Peppermint Mocha or Gingerbread Spice. My hubby and son love French Vanilla, as do I will a little sprinkle of cinnamon.

So, what’s the verdict? And just to sweeten the pot, per say, I’ll be giving away a prize to all of those that respond. It will include a paperback, some coffee and a little something special! When you comment, send your email address so that I can put all of you in a drawing.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Don’t forget that Timeless Love – Marina’s Story is coming out Saturday.

https://www.amazon.com/Timeless-Love-Marinas-Story-Journal-ebook/dp/B08DFGK8JB


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Making time work for you…

Good Tuesday morning! Time… It just keeps marching on and sometimes it marches all over your good intentions. Yep, been there! But, I’ve started doing a couple of things that work for me. SO, here goes:

  1. As I said in Saturday’s post, schedule your advertising ahead of time. That gives you a good slot of time to write. Without having to do your ads every day, then you can focus on other things, like writing…
  2. Set a time to write every day. For me, I try to write every morning before I get dressed and head to the office. That’s my time to write. Sometimes I even set a timer to make sure I get every second of writing time without having to glance at the clock.
  3. Don’t go down the social media rabbit hole. I’ve gone down that hole so many times and lost precious writing time. Go ahead and write before you go on social media, then you don’t have that temptation.
  4. And don’t forget the time gem – the weekend! When I schedule my daily word count, I always put in double on Saturday and Sunday.
  5. Now, my most important way to make time work for me is to do a schedule. I know what I need to get done everyday. If I meet my word goal for the day early, then I can either get in extra words or I can do a little promotional posting. But a schedule helps you keep up with your upcoming releases and you’ll never miss a deadline again…

Don’t forget that the way to meet your deadline is to focus on your writing time. Make sure that you have figured out how much you need to do each day to meet your goal. Make the time work for you…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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Setting up ads for week…

It’s finally Saturday. How do you spend your Saturday? Me, I take a little longer cuddling my coffee, then I check my social media. My house gets cleaned and laundry done, not saying it’s put up, just done. Then I get to work on my weekly ads.

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How do I schedule for a week? I’ll let you in on a little secret, I have a post spreadsheet. On my spreadsheet I have the books that I will post on for the upcoming week and where. I input the information for ads that are coming out and also, my blog posts are mostly done ahead of time.

Why do I schedule all of this ahead of time? I want more time to write. But how do I do it? Well, I use Hootsuite, Twitter Scheduler, Facebook Scheduler and other programs. No, I do not pay for the subscriptions, I do as many on each of them that I can.

A little hint, do not overload your social media with books. Post stuff about yourself, your life, inspirational pictures, pets, and so on. Let your fans know who you are. I try to alternate book posts to every four hours or more. That way I’m not too overpowering.

So, what are you doing today? Are you kicking back, enjoying a good movie? Live life… Laugh a lot… and Love…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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What’s coming up…

It’s Friday! With the tax deadline coming up quickly, I’m excited that it’s Friday because I need a break. But, I’ll be writing this weekend as I have deadlines there too!

Do you plan your year of writing? I do. I’ve already got my writing for 2021 planned out and the covers are in process. Of course, as writers know, something new could be added during the year, it’s just the way our minds work.

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Here’s the remainder of 2020 schedule:

To be released October 17: Timeless Love-Marina’s Story (4th book in The Journal Series) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08DFGK8JB/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i12

To be released November 7: Bay Street (Wishful Harbor 5th book in the Wishful Harbor Series) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08DF89LB8/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i23

To be released December 4: Wine, Wedding & The Cowboy (Book 3 of the Tangled Vines Series) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08DF9JC3V/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i15

To be released January 29: Double Take at Mistletoe Ranch (Book 3 of the Mistletoe Ranch Series) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08DFBY6PR/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i4

As you can see, I’m finishing up 4 series in the above releases. I’m sad to see those series end, but I’m excited for the new series that I’ll be starting for 2021. And it will be a little different from my usual. I will give you a little info now. There will be 5 books in the series and they will be somewhat suspenseful. But I’ll fill you in on more about that soon.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Dreams – We all have them…

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Dreams fill our nights and guide our days. Some dreams are just imagination, but some dreams are real. Let’s explore them…

As a young girl, my dreams were filled with horses, grand pianos and writing… Well, I’ve made one dream come true, writing. And through my writing, my dream of owning horses can come true. If you’ve read any of my books, then you know most of them have horses in them. It’s my way of living one of my dreams.

Do you live your dream or just dream about it? Always remember that some of our dreams are right in front of us, we just have to focus on them. So, will you make it happen today?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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Genre… How do you choose?

Wow! We made it people, we’re halfway to the weekend… I have question and it’s one that’s been asked of me, plus I’ve asked it myself. What is the genre you write in?

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It’s like sitting down to watch a movie. You have to choose what you want to watch. If you love Rom Com’s, then you’re not likely to choose a Horror Flick. Same with books, people are specific when they look for a book.

So, you’re probably saying, you write romance, that’s easy. But, when you put your book on a publishing site, it’s not that easy. Ok, the main genre is romance for me, but there are many styles of romance. It’s endless and sometimes gives me a headache. How do you break it down?

For example, when putting a book on Amazon for instance, you have to list 2 categories and then 7 keywords. Yikes! And if you get it wrong, you won’t explode, but your sales may not either. If you get it right, you nail it!

Now, the categories for romance are long and sort of specific. Yes, I know that I don’t write Dystopian Romance. To be honest, I had to look up Dystopian, just to clarify. And no, I don’t write Erotic Romance. But, does my book fall into Contemporary, New Adult, General, Comedy, Western, etc… The list goes on.

My best advice on this subject is to go to writers that write like you. See where they have their books at and always, always, look at the bestsellers in that style. Because if they aren’t bestsellers, then they may be doing the same thing as you, trying to wrap their head around it.

Oh, and don’t forget the keywords. This is something that I change up often and I mean often. Of course, sometimes Amazon will put your book in other keywords or categories, like if your book is short, it could be listed under Kindle Read under 2 hours. Do your research!!! Let me repeat that so that all of those in the back heard me, DO YOUR RESEARCH!!! Don’t you hate shouty capitals. Well, I hope I got your attention.

Go now and look at the book that’s not selling as well as it should. No, really, go now. You can’t afford for your book to be sitting in the wrong spot. It’s like a cook book that’s put under historical romance. Wrong! So get to it. And let me know how it goes. Make sure that you keep a spreadsheet on sales before you make the change, then after. See if it works and if you haven’t see a change in a couple of weeks, tweak it.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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