Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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While looking through the attic…

Saturday afternoon I ventured into my attic which is taking your life in your own hands. I’m, how would you say it, a pack rat. I confess, it’s a thing I inherited. When I was younger I had a book issue. I’d buy books everywhere I went. Needles to say I have a lot of books. Yes actual physical books. You remember those right?

I noticed that the pasteboard boxes that contained my books were looking a little worse for wear. So I had some extra plastic bins so I decided to take on the task of going through my books and putting them neatly in the bins. It was like a journey through my history. I laughed as I went through the different types of romance genres I’ve gone through in my 44 years. I love history, so I went through a rather lengthy historical romance stage. Everything I bought was a historical romance.

There are a couple of books that I hold close to my heart and have been known to reread several times. One of those was a book named “Violet Fire” by Jo Goodman that was published around 1987. It’s an awesome romance. It’s actually the second copy of that book I’ve owned. The first one I let an old family member borrow it. She passed away not long after that and the book never resurfaced. Not sure what happened there. I was lucky to find a copy a couple of years later in a second hand book store. You would have thought I’d found the Ark of the Covenant. I squealed and danced. Needless to say I was happy.

Well, I thought I’d lost it again as I couldn’t find it a couple years ago when I wanted to read it again. I thought I was just destined to not get to read it again. I picked up one of the boxes at the bottom of the stack and guess what, there it was with a couple of other books I thought I’d lost. I let out a whoop and my son came to the bottom of the attic steps. I assured him that I was fine and did a little silent dance. I’ve read every small moment I had. Funny how your hand cramps when trying to hold an actual book. I love it… My Kindle feels a little left out, but it will get some loving real soon.

It’s crazy how you find a book that you love and you just have to read it every once in a while. If you ever find this book on Amazon or in a book store I suggest reading it. It’s rather lengthy, but really good. I like Jo Goodman’s writing and this is one of my favorites.

As always, good writing and May God Bless you!

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Romance…

Romance is so elusive and sometimes hard to find unless you’re reading it in a novel. That’s the comment I hear so often. I don’t believe this state of mind that many people have. Romance can be found, lost, and revived. Still a skeptic?

Romance has been around since the first day of creation. Some people search for it as they would gold in the hills. Sometimes you have it and just don’t see it at all. It’s that simple touch from your lover that sends tiny tendrils of goosebumps up your spine. It’s that simple look of pleasure that you share across the table.

Have you ever wondered where romance hides? Everyone has a moment when you think romance has gone away. Maybe it’s when finances are bad, tragedy looms, or when a marriage fails. Romance is still there, we just as humans put it behind our heart and refuse at times to pull it out again.

As a romance writer I try to bring romance into everyone’s heart. It’s one of the biggest sellers today, romance. Everyone wants it, but what lengths will they go to? Some will spend a fortune buying gifts to show romance, but true romance can’t be bought. It’s a part of you. A kiss is free, a look is free and a touch is free. Give it a try. You might enjoy finding a little romance.

As always, good writing and May God Bless you!
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Writer’s frame of mind

What’s up with my writer’s brain? The book “Rekindled Flame” that was supposed to be completed in December is still in the process. What started out to be a novella has turned out to be a novella on steroids. It’s funny how you think you know how the manuscript will go and then all of a sudden you’re going into a more advanced manuscript.

Got to rant for a moment on reviews. As I’ve said before reviews rarely make me upset, but I’ve received a couple that seem to be from the same person. It’s like a reviewer stalker. They’re appearing on all my books and say basically the same thing. What’s funny is the review does not fit the book. I’m not sure what the reviewer is trying to accomplish, but I do know that they need to actually read the book so that the review at least matches. I don’t get mad or upset about ugly, nasty reviews, but I don’t appreciate just downright vicious ones that come from a person that evidently never read the book to begin with. Oh, well, enough of that. Whew, got that off my chest. Now I feel lot’s better πŸ™‚

Was pleasantly surprised when a delivery was made yesterday. It was my newest novel. I ordered copies for giveaways and family. It was “The Winner Is Love”. It’s so exciting to hold your work in your hand. Seeing them on the internet and computer screen is one thing, but to actually hold it in your hand is so rewarding. I was very pleased with the cover. My editor designs my covers and she’s awesome. She get’s exactly what I want and totally blows me away with the finished product.

Well, it’s Friday and school started back today for my son. It was a wonderful Christmas break. We spent some good mama-son time together. It was sad to put him on the bus this morning. The house is so quiet without him playing his drums (Santa had a brain issue). Well, it’s back to normal in the office and tax season has begun.

As usual, good writing and May God Bless You!


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As I Ponder 2012…

I thought this picture would be a refreshing change. Everything here is starting to look drab and dull. Winter can do that you know. I can hear the birds chirping this morning as I make my post. I love it. Well, on to the new year.

As I ponder the past year I wonder, what did I accomplish? What did I want to accomplish but didn’t? Well, let’s see. When 2012 started I had only played with the idea of publishing some of my manuscripts. Now six of them are a reality. That’s exciting to me. Wow, I published six books in 2012, should’ve been seven, but that’s water under the perpetual bridge so to speak.

My ship didn’t come in, meaning I didn’t win the lottery or sell a million books, so today I have to come back to my accounting office and start the busiest time of the year for an accountant. I love this time of year. Weird, I know, but that’s just me. I love it when it’s busy and I don’t have time to think about the things I haven’t done.

I am thankful for a healthy, happy family. It’s wonderful to have friends that care, family that is close and all of you. That’s another thing that changed in 2012. I became a social media junkie. Yep, that’s right, me, ‘Ms I don’t do social media’. πŸ™‚ Well you all know how that turned out. Here I am blogging, tweeting, facebooking, and any other site I can get on. Funny how publishing a book can change your life and publishing six in one year really changes things.

Well, I hope you all have a prosperous year.

As always, good writing and May God Bless you in 2013!
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Oatmeal, coffee and romance…

As I eat my apple cinnamon oatmeal and Β savor my second cup of coffee I muse over my newest manuscript. Writers block, well not really writers block, more like writers laziness has took over. I think it stems from way too much on my plate.

I did something yesterday that I really hate to do. I went shopping. It’s Christmas time and it was inevitable that I would have to hit the mall. I ordered as much as I could online, but I had to break down and jump into the frying pan of shopping. Anyone who knows me knows that I hate to shop, don’t know why, but I do. Of course my mom went with me as she loves to shop. We were stuck in traffic at a dead stop for over thirty minutes. That made the experience even happier. By the time we got to the outlet mall I was just a little stressed.

But while my mom stood in line in the store, I took my packages out to the sidewalk to sit and people watch. As a writer I get a lot of good ideas by people watching. I watched this elderly couple get out of their car and he helped with her coat. You could see the immense love shining in his eyes. They were so adorable as they walked to the sidewalk and started walking hand in hand. They would look at one another and smile, with eyes twinkling. It made things seem a little better.

It got me to thinking about romance and how you keep it alive through the years. You can love someone with all your heart, but not have romance. It happens everyday. But as I watched this elderly couple, i was in awe of the romance that just seeped out of them. It was obvious to anyone that just watched them that romance just dominated them. It inspired me to get busy writing. I was humbled too by the thought that even at their age they could keep the spark alive.

So as always, keep the romance alive. If you don’t have romance in your life, it’s not too late. Cook your sweetie a romantic dinner, light some candles, and sit in the candlelight talking. Don’t talk about the finances or the problems of the day. Just talk about each other. Make it special. You won’t regret it. Maybe send him a little note on his phone, but do make sure that he is the only one looking at the text. (Been there and it was so awkward explaining it to my son who read the text for his dad that was driving. Needless to say, he now waits til he gets where he’s going to read his texts. πŸ™‚ )

As always, good writing and heightened romance. May God Bless you!oatmeal4


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Books are like Snowflakes!

You’re probably saying to yourself, what? I was going through my manuscripts that are in the works and was surprised at the varied topics. As I looked at them I thought about how different books can be. Just as with snowflakes, books can have so many different shapes, angles and looks.

You have so many genres. They include romance, children’s , christian, comedy, adult, science fiction, horror, and paranormal just to name a few. It’s amazing how many genres are out there now that weren’t available just a couple of years ago. If you have a certain thing you like, just Google and I bet you’ll find a book in that category.

Then you have the size. Books can be as short as 2500 words up to well the sky’s the limit. Books can be big in size or really small to where you can hold them in your palm. I’ve even seen different shaped books.

Well, then you get into the writing styles. Every writer has their own style. Some are more formal than others. Some have a dry style while others have a sweet style. It’s amazing when you pick up a book from a new author, whether it be a author that just jumped into the publishing world or one that is a veteran but you’ve never read from them, how different every author is. I’ve read some authors and been amazed at their descriptive abilities, but maybe read their second book and it was totally different. Some authors write many different genres. They jump from one to the other trying to make their mark in the publishing world.

I don’t know about you, but I’m glad that books are like snowflakes. If everybody wrote the same way in the same genre it would be a boring world. In my opinion the world of reading and writing is changing everyday. Every day a new genre is born and a new style reader. So get reading and try a new genre. You might be surprised at how much you like it.

As always, good writing and May God Bless you!
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Writing the right ending…

What do you do when you get down to the last chapters? At this point you need to building up for the end, but how?

As I work on the ending of my newest book, I ponder this question. Just as my last novel, “The Winner Is Love” I wonder, is this the end? Well with that one it wasn’t. I didn’t know it when I started writing it. I had plan a simple, sweet Christmas romance that would end at the words The End. But guess what, as with any writer I had to listen to my characters and my heart told me their story is not done.

My newest book is the 2nd book in a series and I don’t know whether I want it to continue. But if I don’t continue it, how do I end it? Do the lovers ride off in the sunset never to be heard from again? Do I kill them off in a lovers quarrel? What am I saying? I can’t kill them off, that would be murder.

The ending of a book can be as important, or even more important than the beginning. I’ve read books before that the ending left me baffled. Some have left me angry and others ready for more. If you are planning a next book, you have to leave the reader wanting more. You have to give just enough information to keep them hooked for the next book. If you’re ending it there, you need to make the ending mean something. If you end the book wrong, will the reader want to read anything else from you.

I have to admit that I’ve read some books that the ending made me so upset that I didn’t have the heart to read the authors list of other books written. I just couldn’t do that to myself. You know how it is when you’re watching a movie and the main character that you’ve fell in love with dies in the last scene and bam, that’s it. Finished, the end, done! Makes you want to throw something at the TV. Books can make you want to throw your Kindle.

What do you like in an ending? Do you like the explosive ending, where you are just floored? Do you like the sweet, tender ending where you just melt and have to sit quietly for a moment and reflect? (Maybe that’s just me πŸ˜‰ ) Or do you like the nail biter ending where you get left hanging on the edge of the cliff? Let me know your thoughts. I love to hear what everyone thinks.

 

As always, good writing and May God Bless you!end