Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Feeling like Fall…Throwback Thursday!

Good Thursday morning! Here in Georgia it actually feels like fall finally. The temp here is in the high 50’s, so that’s a refreshing way to start the day.

Since it’s Thursday, let’s go back a ways and reacquaint you with one of my first books, Tender Flames. This book was one of the easiest to write out of the 25 I’ve published. It will take you on a journey of love that will leave you wanting more.

Tender Flames revised cover

Here’s a little tidbit from Tender Flames:

They walked hand in hand back to the party, both deep in thought. She was thinking about how her family would react, but mostly how Wes would. Zach knew his family would be happy, well almost his whole family. He knew it was mean of him to want to hurt his brother, but his brother was a fool for not snatching her up long ago. 

     They arrived back at the party.  Randy ran over, “Hey sis, everyone wondered where you two had wondered off to.  Judging by the look on your face I know what you were doing.” He grinned as he pulled his sister’s hair.  She blushed.

     Zach led her to the front of the dance floor.  He whistled for the music to stop.  Everyone turned to see what Zach had to say.  “I have some wonderful news.  I have asked Sara to be my wife, and she has accepted. We are to be wed before my leave is up.”  There was a stunned silence then everyone whooped and yelled.  There were a lot of handshakes and pats on the back for Zach and hugs for Sara.  Her parents were stunned at first, then relieved.  They had always hoped she would marry one of the Dawson boys.  The same went for his parents, they were thrilled.  His mother had even cried. 

Wes walked up and leaned over Sara. He whispered in her ear. “I hope you know what you are doing?” He then gave her a hug that was tight enough to press the air from her lungs. The look he gave her was full of something she did not recognize.  She knew then that he cared more for her than she realized.  She was suddenly angry with him. It served him right. He should have let her know a long time ago. She did not plan on waiting on him the rest of her life.

He gave his brother a hug and said in his ear. “Brother, she had better not be pregnant. You had better make her happy.” He gave him a look that dared him to go against what he said. With that, he had left with his girlfriend.

You’ll fall in love with this love triangle…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

https://www.amazon.com/Tender-Flames-Revised-Love-Book-ebook/dp/B0084USOE2

 

 


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Cowboys, Pirates, and other heroes…

Have you noticed a trend lately? Of course, as you know, I have no problem with the Cowboy or Pirate heroes, as I write mostly about Cowboys and Pirates. But it’s funny the interest in these types of leading men.

But with that being said, why is it so popular in the romance genre? I don’t see a lot of cowboy heroes on movies or pirate heroes for that matter. It’s as though romance readers need that masculine persona that follows a cowboy or pirate.

On the side of the cowboy, there’s the fact that they’re usually strong from working the ranch all day. So that’s a plus for a hero. Then, of course, they can ride in on their horse and save the day, or truck, whatever the scene might need. A fictional cowboy is usually honor bound and very protective which lends a good lead male character. Don’t forget that handy Stetson to keep the sun out.

Now we can’t leave out the Pirate, good or bad, they make a great male lead character. Of course, they command a ship, which means they are a take charge man. A good pirate can take care of his heroine and lead his ship through the worst storm without batting an eye. Then you have the bad pirate, but you can have them turn good pirate, which usually takes a strong heroine to take care of that task. Don’t forget the attire of a pirate. I always think of ‘Jack Sparrow’ or ‘Will Turner’, yes, I’m a Pirates of the Caribbean fan.

There are so many hero types that lead to a good romance. Don’t forget the law officer coming to the rescue, the firefighter saving the lady from the fire or even the country boy that’s not quite a cowboy, but has polite values and that protective gene.

So, who makes a good hero for you?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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The Free Book Debate…

Good morning! Hope all is well with you on this beautiful morning. Georgia is having a beautiful day today, but the weather will be here for Thursday and Friday, so we need to enjoy today and tomorrow!

As for today’s topic, it’s permafree books. There’s much controversy about this strategy. Most authors split the fence on this topic. I’ve played with it periodically through the years, but my newest try at it has been a success. Why do I say that, you might ask? Well, here’s why…

Do you see the number just above this sentence? That’s where Ridge is at the moment. Since I put it on permafree several weeks ago, it has stayed in the top 100 in this category and notice it’s not the free category. You’re probably saying, ‘but it’s free so you’re making nothing on all those downloads’, well that’s true, but here’s why it’s a good thing.

The week that Ridge went free, there wasn’t a lot of change in sales. But the next week and all the ones to follow showed a huge difference in my sales. suddenly it was like I could follow the readers journey. Each book in this series started selling in order of the series, then my other books started in the same way. It’s like the readers are buying the Five Oaks Series, then working their way through each of my series. Kind of like watching dominoes fall in a row. I’ve also started selling my older published books, which a couple of them had to be dusted off from sitting on Amazon so long 😉

SO, I’d say my trial period worked. Ridge will stay free. My suggestion is to wait until you have a couple of books in your series out before you go free with the first one. That way the reader has a direction to go in. Then sit back and watch it do the work for you. It’s like free advertising!

Have you tried this? How did it work for you?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Writing Fun…

It’s finally Friday… hope you have an awesome weekend planned. My son is out of school for 10 days so I’m happy to spend time with him.

As for writing, do you have fun with it? Me, yes I love to write. It’s a big part of me that get’s to flow from my fingers daily. Some days I struggle when something is on my mind, but I still enjoy it. Writing is a stress reliever, which is great therapy for me.

I’ve heard writers say that writing isn’t fun, it’s just something they have to do. What? I just don’t understand that frame of mind at all. For me, writing is fun and I think it’s what helps me stay sane in this insane world we live in. After a busy day, I can sit down at my laptop and lose myself. Even if it’s just an hour or so, but it helps clear my head.

Don’t forget all the fun of meeting such wonderful people, other writers, bloggers and reviewers. Then you have the great fans that fill your inbox with wonderful words that make you want to write even more. It’s a wonderful life, the life of a writer.

Writing is fun, if you don’t think it’s fun, then maybe you need to get lost in it for a minute, then rethink it.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…Thanksgiving Cowboy


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Saturday Writing…

What’s your best day to write? For me, I like to write on Saturdays. It’s quiet, no business to take care of and usually have the house to my self. Today I’m working on a couple of pivotal scenes in Emma Rose and Safe in the Pirate’s Arms. Hopefully one or the other or maybe both will be available in the next week or so.

I’ve learned a lot about writing in the last two years. It’s not as easy as it looks. So many people tell me that one day they’ll write something because it looks so easy. I just smile and wish them luck. Some days it’s easier than others, but the writing is only part of it. There’s so much more to it. 

Writing consists of many parts. First you have to get the idea down. But some ideas don’t pan out to actual books. Amazingly enough, I’ve had so many ideas for books, but after a page or two the story fizzled out. It has to have depth enough to hold up the story line for several chapters or it will just collapse in on itself.

Of course after it’s written, you have to edit, then reedit then edit again. Don’t forget the cover and blurb. The blurb is the hardest part for me, even though it consists of only a few words. I’d rather write a 100,000 word book in a weekend than to sit down and write a blurb. One is impossible and the other is nerve wrenching.

Then of course, whether you go with a traditional publisher or you self publish, the promotional part of writing is never ending. It’s the promotional effort that get’s you out there. If you stop promoting for a week, then you can fall behind.

As I said, writing is not so easy. But for some reasons Saturdays make it easier.

As always, good writing and may God bless you…

 


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Back up and refreshed!

Well, thanks to my brilliant computer guy I’m back up and running with a totally refreshed computer. I spent last night reinstalling all my programs and back ups. I always worry when doing this because I don’t want to lose any information. It’s amazing how attached we get to technology.

As for my writing, I was unable to get any done last night and I wanted to so badly. As I sat waiting on Office to reinstall my mind was whirling with characters that were screaming in my ears. I even dreamed I was on a pirate ship. 

I’m excited to report that the republished version of With All My Heart is still doing well. It’s now in the top 20 on Amazon. What’s funny is the original version is free on Amazon and is at #8. How crazy is that? All of my books have started hitting again. I guess it’s true if you get a bestseller then you hit the right algorithim on Amazon. It’s been refreshing to say the least.

As I sit here watching Lonesome Dove and sipping my coffee I’m content, for now. Of course now I have to put my books on this computer. My fingers are itchy and ready to get back to work. If you’re wondering why I’m watching Lonesome Dove so early this morning, well it’s one of my favorite cowboy movies. I recorded it a couple of nights ago, It was my dad’s favorite too. We used to watch it everytime it came on. 

Of course watching all these cowboys and horses makes me ready to start my newest cowboy romance, but no, I’m going to be strong and finish Emma Rose and Safe In The Pirate’s Arms. At least Emma Rose has horses in it. I’m a country girl, what can I say.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Pirate Romance – Having fun…

Good Tuesday morning. I hope you’re all well and having a beautiful morning. I’m working on my second cup of coffee struggling to get awake. I had one of those nights where sleep came quickly but left a couple of hours after. So now I’m trying to kickstart my body. We’ll see how that goes.

I’ve been working on a couple of books. The pirate romance is coming along smoothly and yes there has been rough seas along the way. It’s been so much fun writing a pirate romance. Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve thought about my cowboys along the way and I do have a cowboy romance coming soon after the pirates dock their ship. But for now I’m getting my sea legs and wearing a fluffy shirt.

Here’s a little snippet from Safe in the Pirate’s Arms:

 

Pacing the quarters that were quickly shrinking, she finally walked over to the door. She placed her ear on the door to see if anyone was near. When she heard nothing, she quietly opened the door. Slowly she stepped out of the cabin. The sea air felt wonderful on her face.

Closing her eyes she let it blow over her body and through her hair. The smell was heavenly and made her long to be up on deck. She leaned over the railing and looked down at the water rippling and splashing on the side of the huge ship.

So caught up in her view, she didn’t hear Caleb coming up the walkway. He couldn’t believe she was already disobeying him. She was caught off guard when he pulled her quickly into his quarters. The anger in his eyes told her that this would cost her freedom.

“Do you even have a thought to your safety? Am I the only one concerned with it?” He thrust her toward the bed and stood over her. “I left you untied because I wanted to give you a chance to walk around and for your wrists to heal.”

“I’m sorry, but I just can’t stay cooped up in here. It’s stuffy and warm.” She indicated the sweat on her brow.

He walked over to the door and contemplated what to do with this woman. She’d disobeyed his orders. What if his men would’ve seen her? Rolling his eyes he turned to look down at her. “If you’ll stay in here until after the men go to sleep, I’ll take you up on deck.” He put his hands on his hips. “Can you handle that?”

She meekly looked up at him from under her lowered lashes. “I’ll stay right here.” She was excited about going up on deck to see the stars overhead. They were always brighter out at sea.

“I’ll be back in a bit with dinner, so you’d better be right here. Do you understand?” He talked to her as if she was a child.

“I’m not a child.” She huffed out.

“Then don’t make me treat you like one.” He said and walked back out the door. By the time he stepped back on deck he was smiling. Things were not going to get boring with her on board. 

 

Hope you liked this little piece of my pirate romance. It’s going to be an intriguing story. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Monday morning writing

     Good morning! I hope all is well with all of you. I’m moving slow this morning. I guess it was the trip to the lake and then getting everything back in order when I got home. Oh then I tried to make up on my word count yesterday, which I did type in ove 5000 words Saturday evening and yesterday.
     I’m super excited about my two upcoming books. I’ve been splitting up my writing time between both which is sometimes a hair pulling sensation. The one that pulls the hardest gets the most time.
     As I told you last week my newly republished edition of With All My Heart has stayed in the top 100 on Amazon since day one of the release. This makes me smile and do a little happy dance. It’s amazing what a few changes do. My next republish will be Ghost Lover and I’ll give you a little peek at the newly renovated cover which I’m thrilled with.

     Have any of you been writing over the holiday weekend? If so, what? I love to hear from fellow authors and what they’re working on.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…