Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Day 25 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour

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Welcome to Day 25 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”

Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.

Today my guest author is Ana Calin and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Ana and her book The Blacksmith.

What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?

In a world of romance where boy meets girl and their cheeks turn red with a heavy crush, we forget to give a chance to fiery, passionate love to those who’ve known the hardships of a worn relationship. Ex-husbands and ex-wives tend to seek thrill in new partners because that’s what society seems to promote. “The Blacksmith” explores the psychological depths of forbidden desires that are eating at the core of family people, seeking to shatter the legend of ‘born virtue’ but also to give romance a new track: girl met boy long ago, got married, now both lost interest and guess what? She’s into a much younger guy. Now where to? “The Blacksmith” is the electrifying story of a woman who will rediscover the power of youth and the bliss of falling in love, challenging head on the principles of society and the very human condition. I would yet add this for my beloved readers: don’t think you got this figured out…

 Biography

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Ana Calin was born in 1984 in Constanta, Romania. Avid for fairy tales and stories as a child, her mother taught her to read at the age of four and, discovering the girl’s love for foreign languages, hired an English teacher when Ana was eight. By the age of ten she had read Pride and Prejudice, Wuthering Heights and Great Expectations in the original language. Ana studied English and German Language and Literature in high school and later on in university. In 2005 she received a scholarship for one year in Bielefeld, Germany, and met her husband, also Romanian, upon her return to her hometown in 2006. Following her wedding in 2009 she returned to Germany with her husband and has been working ever since as a translator and interpreter of English, German and Romanian. Her area of expertise covers not only fiction but also psychology and science, which inspires her writing and allowed her to craft her first novel, The Blacksmith, as a grounded fantasy relying on concepts that are feasible at least in theory. She currently lives in Berlin.

 

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A dangerous love story with a twist. Romance and thriller merged in a fantasy that is actually possible.

Aurelia Novac’s life and marriage to Damian take an abrupt turn when she meets the unnaturally handsome Ivan Grabianko. Ivan is Aura’s student, a forbidden fruit who challenges her morals and casts her in a fight against guilty desires, but also the main suspect when teachers start dying violent deaths. Refusing to believe that Ivan is a cold blooded murderer and convinced the police is covering the real killer’s tracks, Aura starts an investigation of her own, seeking to save herself and those she cares for. Following the available threads – DNA traces and an alias, The Blacksmith – she will find herself drawn in a war between secret societies led by superior humans, in which the Blacksmith is a purpose in himself, a deadly demon born of man. Aura will go unveiling the meaning behind the Blacksmith’s alias and dark mysteries of the very human race, yet all at a heavy cost – she will become consumed with love for a dangerous man whose innate nature ist to kill…

 

So, go over and check out Ana at Amazon, you won’t be disappointed.

 

Don’t forget to check out Rosie’s side of the tour at http://rosieamber.wordpress.com/romancing-september-tour/


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Day 24 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour

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Welcome to Day 24 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”

Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.

Today my guest author is Kylie Sabra and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Kylie and her book The Singing Dagger.

What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?

The world is fast-paced—people rushing to and fro with little free time. No one wants to slow down, or worse, they fear they can’t slow down or they will fall behind. Even as a professional writer and artist, I suffer from this same delusion. So. I understand it well. In this digital age where movies, news and scoops du jour are delivered to our televisions, PCs, pads and phones; I fear that people are put off at the thought of picking up a 300+ page novel. To propound this problem is the growing number of e-books that call themselves novels—many numbering less than 100 pages. I could not for the life of me figure out how people who were 20 years my junior had 30-50 books under their belts. That’s when I discovered that these were really stories—maybe novellas.

How do I react to this craving for instant literary gratification? I don’t.

Mastery of language is a magical gift. I would prefer to anguish over the exact choice of one word to achieve that perfect nuance than to bash out 20 pages, just for the sake of writing to appeal to the masses. I love to excite all of the senses when I write.

I talk about scents.

“The comforting smells of smoked sausages and boiled potatoes hooked their fingers beneath the sleeping Shadows’ noses and pulled them into consciousness. “  

I try to bring imagery to something as simple as the sound of silence . . .

“Just as suddenly, quiet quilted the room.”

. . . or the pain of loss.

“The clear sky turned sickly green. Ominous clouds gathered over the ocean and fingers of lightning beckoned Finn to the cliff’s edge. The wind whipped his golden hair back from his contorted face. As thunder hammered the earth, Finn and the climaxing gale released their pent up fury in one rending wail after another.”

I don’t believe these are things achieved without careful consideration. So my greatest challenge is not to fall victim to the demand to proliferate words, but rather to stay my course and choose my path—and my words—carefully. 

 

 Biography

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Kylie Addison Sabra was born in the middle of the U.S. in 1956. She grew up in Texas and has lived the last 19 years in the Seattle area, which she thinks of as her forever home. She is the mother of two grown sons, Jason and James, and is fiercely proud of them both. Her husband Scott is her best friend, love and chief supporter. 
Ms. Sabra has been writing and creating art for most of her life in one capacity or another. Now, they are her full-time children to foster and grow. For the past three years she has served as curator for The Rose Theatre Galleries, a virtual gallery in the Second Life Grid. It was here that she found the courage to make art her living as well as her life.

 

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Visited by tragedy and heart-wrenching deception, Erin retreats into self-imposed isolation. But the Fates are not finished with her and she is uprooted from her respite to face the dark forces that threaten to swallow her entirely. Aidan, fettered by his dark parentage and past, is drawn to Erin by the duties of his position and is held to her by the love she awakens in him. Bradach is powerful, beautiful, immortal and ever struggles with his all-too-human jealousy. Erin can’t understand his hatred for Aidan, nor can she shake the feeling that she has known him from some other time, but the feeling is fleeting and can’t be held to grasp. Brieanna, Erin’s life-long friend, wears wisdom like a comfortable old shawl, and her quiet confidence is just what Finn, Aidan’s brother, needs to escape the terrors that drive him. The four humans find themselves the central figures in a centuries-old prophecy and bind themselves together to fight the encroaching horrors from the south that threaten to cover the four kingdoms of Tara in shadow. Tara must now return to the magic that was such a rich part of their heritage, now reviled, in order to save the lands they love. Standing together with the four immortal Elders of Tara; Erin, Aidan, Brieanna and Finn take their predestined places as the Bearers of the Promise and the saviors of Tara.

Check out Kylie’s book, you won’t be disappointed.

Here’s the link to Rosie’s side of the tour: http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-2uU

 


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Day 23 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour

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Welcome to Day 23 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”

Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.

Today my guest author is Fay Cunningham and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Fay and her book Forgottten.

What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?

There will always be a market for light romance. A feisty heroine, a gorgeous hero, a blossoming love affair and plenty of excitement. Pure escapism. The perfect antidote to the stresses of modern life.

In spite of the e-book revolution, I don’t think the challenges for writers of romantic fiction have changed all that much. We still have to provide a good story with lovely characters and (usually) a happy ending. There are a number of sub-genres in romantic fiction, from erotica to the supernatural and everything in between, but we still have to keep our readers entertained – and that will always be our biggest challenge.

Biography

Fay lives in a small town in Essex, England, with her husband. She is now retired, so she has more time for writing. She has been published by Robert Hale, has several books with Lindford Romance in large print, and two books with Harlequin Worldwide Mystery Library in the USA and Canada. Her books are available on Amazon for Kindle. Fay loves to travel, and has visited many European countries. She has also been to Hawaii where her husband’s sister lives.

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Check out Forgotten

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Publication Date: February 8, 2013
Driving home in the dark Serena stops to help an injured man lying in a ditch, but that is only the start of her problems. Someone is watching the apartment she shares with her brother, her mother is being particularly secretive, and police detective Jack Armstrong is convinced Serena is hiding something. Just when she thinks things can get no worse, her missing father turns up. This is definitely not the time to fall in love.
 
Go over to Amazon and check out Faye’s books.
 
Here’s the link to Rosie’s side of the tour:  http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-2uf


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Day 22 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour

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Welcome to Day 22 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”

Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.

Today my guest author is Candace Knoebel and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Candace and her book Embracing Flames.

What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?

 The biggest challenge I’ve found with writing romance today is sticking true to my values. There are so many different categories of romance and they all sell equally well. For me, I am not comfortable with writing erotica or explicit scenes. I haven’t approached that road in my writing just yet. But I know there is a huge market for it and a lot of avid readers who enjoy reading the simplicity of a love story, sex and all. So I guess that leads to the question, do you try to go mainstream or stick with what you believe in?

 With Born in Flames, the focal point of the story was never meant to be about Aurora (the protagonist) and Fenn’s relationship. It was about her journey to self-discovery and self-belief. Don’t get me wrong, there is an element of romance in there and a hint of a relationship to come, but the story is so much more than that. However, I noticed in the feedback that a lot of people were missing the romance element. They wanted to see more of the gorgeous hero and how the feisty heroine would fall in love with him. Like most YA today.  When I thought about it, I saw that the story would eventually come to be about their relationship. They were right. I myself always want to know more about the relationship than the actual story.

This in turn led me to struggle with how much romance I wanted to add in book two of the trilogy (Embracing the Flames) that was mostly epic fantasy.

When I wrote Embracing the Flames, I tried to incorporate a little more romance without selling out or jumping out of my comfort zone. Naturally, there would have been romance any how. Fenn and Aurora are drawn to each other (as they are soul mates), so in order for the story to progress, their relationship had to too. The next question would be: How far is too far in YA? Since my characters are between 18 and 20 (depending on which book you are reading), there would obviously be the conflict of the progression towards sex in the relationship.

 I now found myself questioning how to broach that tastefully without jumping out of YA. I chose to leave subtle hints. While there is kissing and lots of flirting, I didn’t jump into the actual details of what transpires when they approach their ‘first’ time together. It was mentioned. I feel it rings true to who I am and to who my characters are and their values. If I went any further with it, I would have to move the genre into NA.

It has all been a learning experience. I have to remind myself how I feel when I read a good romance and then try to write from there. Stick to what you are comfortable with. I don’t think romance can be written wrong. There is an audience for everything. It’s just finding the right one for you.

 Echelon out ♥

 Biography

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Candace Knoebel is the award-winning author of Born in Flames-a young adult fantasy trilogy. Published by 48fourteen in 2012, Born in Flames went on to win Turning the Pages Book of the Year award in February of 2013.

Candace Knoebel dreamed of being a dancer ever since she could remember. With a love of all things art, she saw herself moving to New York and pursuing her passion as an artist. But all that changed on October 10th, 2002 when she met the love of her life. Her dreams diverged and after marrying her high school sweetheart and having two beautiful children, she realized she missed her creative side. Through lunch breaks and late nights after putting her kids to bed, she built a world where she could escape the ever-pressing days of an eight to five Purgatory. Since then, she crawled out of Purgatory and has devoted her time to writing and sometimes heelying.

 Author Links:

Blog: http://candaceknoebel.wordpress.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Candace-Knoebel/190993824332540?ref=tn_tnmn

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/candaceknoebel

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6458922.Candace_Knoebel

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Publication Date: June 15, 2013
The Stone of Immortality has always been kept under the watch of the Draconta. That is, until the betrayal of a Fate. Now, everything is about to change.
Aurora Megalos accepted her destiny without blinking-even if it meant succumbing to her dragon side. Deemed the Progeny, she left the ordinary life she knew and has done everything in her power to learn the ways of her new home and what it means to be part dragon. But when her mentor, Astral, suddenly disappears, she is forced to take the reins with war on the brink. She sets out on an epic journey to find what her arch enemy, Zordon, is after. What she discovers is far worse than she could’ve ever imagined. She will be tested and pushed to the limit. Lives will be lost, love will be found, and most importantly, a battle will begin.
 
Go on over and check out Candace’s books. Candace has been my guest a couple of times and I can tell you that you won’t be let down by her series of books.
 
Here’s a link to Rosie’s side of the tour: http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-2w3


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Day 21 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour

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Welcome to Day 21 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”

Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.

Today my guest author is Sonya Loveday and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Sonya and her book Casted.

What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?

That’s a really great question! For me, I’d have to say the biggest challenge is making sure there is enough romance to catch the readers’ attention but still hold true to what the story is about. Everyone loves a good romance brewing between your main characters and root for them all the way through to the end.  

            For me, I have to keep focused on the balance between romance and storyline, enough of both to keep the reader coming back for more. After all, my novel Casted has a lot of different aspects to it; magic, romance, mystery and action. Balancing them out gives the reader a little of everything, enough so, that I can only hope they look forward to the next book.

            Another challenge is breaking into the genre. Being a new author there is a lot riding on your shoulders. Bringing attention to yourself in such a huge category like romance takes time. It’s time well spent, if you can get a following that really enjoys your books. It’s all a new author like me can hope for.

  

Biography

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 Sonya Loveday, first and foremost is a reader, an avid one. It is of that love that brought her to the realization that this was the answer to the nagging persistent feeling that ‘there’s got to be something more’. The dream came alive in 2009 when she purchased her laptop and began the tedious step of becoming a published author. When she’s not reading, she’s writing. When she’s not writing, she’s reading. And when she’s not doing either of those things she’s sleeping, shuttling her children back and forth to school, letting the dogs and cats in and out of the house for the umpteenth time in the last hour and dreaming of a clean house. You can find Sonya Loveday on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads and WordPress on the links below: http://www.facebook.com/sonyalovedayauthor?ref=hl http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/11660396-sonya-loveday https://twitter.com/SonyaLoveday – @SonyaLoveday http://www.sonyaloveday@wordpress.com

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Publication Date: July 29, 2013
Jade had spent the majority of her life running from the Triad. The Triad, are a powerful group, who would stop at nothing to obtain Jade and the missing spell book for leader, Lorenzo’s, nefarious plans. And now that she has absorbed the highly coveted magic contained inside the missing book, there is nowhere left for her to hide.
With the help of her friends, Jade steps out from the shadows and learns how to fight back. But no one is prepared for Elinor-the woman bound inside of the book that’s trapped in Jade’s mind. Now she not only needs to protect herself from the Triad, but from what’s hiding inside her mind as well. 
Jade never expected the answer to it all would revolve around love.
Edge is dark, mysterious, and a sworn member of the Triad. He also hides a secret past that threatens the thin line he walks between good and evil. Lives are at stake when Jade and Edge’s two worlds collide. Can Jade learn to trust him when he says he is her pre-ordained and vows to do everything he can to protect her? But more importantly, can she trust herself and the woman in her mind?
 
Go on over and check out Sonya. She’s been featured on my blog before and I know you will not be disappointed with Casted.
 
Here’s the link to Rosie’s side of the tour: http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-2rZ


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Day 20 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour

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Welcome to Day 20 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”

Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.

Today my guest author is Hazel Osmond and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Hazel and her book Playing Grace.

What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?

That’s a really good question and for a while I worried about that very thing – how could I, a woman of a certain age, get the tone spot on when writing about people younger than I was? Even more worrying – was romance itself a bit of an outdated concept? Isn’t the modern world a bit more cynical?

Then I stopped worrying. I mean, I don’t live in a cave – I’m out there in the world and as far as I can see, while people today might be more sharing with information about their lives, while they might employ different means to meet potential partners and perhaps be more open about their sexual needs – the big emotions are the same as those that powered people who actually did live in caves.

I still firmly believe that you can leave your house one morning thinking your life is going one way and then ‘zap’ you meet someone and everything changes. And while I don’t think people in today’s society expect love to solve everything in their lives, I do think that moment of attraction is one of the most powerful pieces of magic around. Finding someone to love, who loves you back in the same way, is still something millions of people wish for.

So now I don’t think the biggest challenge is to ensure you drop into your story the right buzz words and a suitable level of weary cynicism, it’s to make sure that you show how the fundamental emotions are still powering people and how that works in what is a more complex society. People have so many more choices these days – women aren’t like Cinderella waiting for their prince to come – and I suppose that’s why I write romances with humour. Trying to find love and make it last in the modern world calls for flexibility and a sense of humour and my books show that. Which, hopefully, will make them stand the test of time!!

  Biography

 

 

 

 

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I lived in a load of places when I was growing up, but I suppose Bath, in the West Country, UK, is my home town as far as being the place that shaped me the most when I was younger. Now though, I’ve lived in the North East of England for over thirty years, so my home town is Newcastle upon Tyne, UK – bold, vibrant, friendly. I love it.

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Grace is pretending to be someone she isn’t to hide a big set of secrets from her past – so she’s playing a role. Tate, the American guy who explodes into her life senses that there is more to her than meets the eye and sets about trying to tease out the real Grace – so in a way, he’s playing her.

Go over to Amazon and check out Hazel’s books.

Here’s the link to Rosie’s side of the tour: http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-2vw


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Who wants a free audio book?

Audible has given me 5 links to get free copies of my audible book “The Winner Is Love”. So, what else would I do but give them away. But how to do this. Well, I think I know a way. It could get tricky but let’s see who’s game.

The first 5 people to play this game all the way through get the code to unlock their free audion book. 

Here we go:

1: Go to Amazon and look up “The Winner Is Love”, take a close look at the cover and tell me what object the couple are encased in.

2: Direct message me on Twitter the answer to #1.

3: Go to my Facebook page and look on my main page. In the header I have all my book covers lined up. What is the 3rd book from the left on the top row? Direct message me on my Facebook page.

4: When you have completed this challenge come back here and comment that you’re done. I will announce the winner in a post tomorrow. That is if anyone is up to the challenge.

5: Have a great night.

Good luck and have fun rummaging through my pages.

Good writing and May God Bless You…