Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Wednesday Coffee Thoughts…

Wow, we’ve made it to the midweek crunch. So, what’s running through my mind this afternoon? Glad you asked. Here goes…

Do you read other genres than you write in? I write romance, so I mostly read romance novels. But to my surprise, I talked with other writers that don’t read the genre they write. How is that possible? Just a little thought that ran through my mind as I sip my coffee this afternoon…

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5 things every author needs to know…

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Good morning! Writing… Writers block… Publishing… The life of a writer. It’s a roller coaster and not for the faint of heart. Here are the top 5 things every author needs to know about starting to write and publish…

  1. It’s not as easy as it looks. Let me be very clear about this, writing isn’t easy. There’s more to it than simply writing words. You’ve got to make sure to plot, plan, and organize those words to where the reader can get lost in the world you’ve created. If you don’t do it with an ebb and flow, then the reader will lose interest and move on. So, don’t think it’s just putting words on paper. There’s so much more to the process.
  2. Writer’s block is real! Every author has experienced writer’s block at one time or the other. It’s a helpless feeling and only perseverance gets you through it. You can get past it, just have confidence. Keep writing and working on other projects.
  3. Editor’s are essential. Alright, let’s all say this and put on repeat! Editors are essential. Even the most savvy writer can’t find all of the mistakes or bad wording in a manuscript. To be honest, editors miss some too. But let’s be honest, when we’re reading our own work, it’s hard to be completely harsh. An editor can help to reword things so that the story flows better. And some changes, even though they can hurt, are necessary.
  4. Read everyday… It may sound crazy, but reading actually helps you as a writer. But read in the genre that you write in. I’ve been reading books that the author wrote with such clear, precise wording that I was inspired. And I’ve read books that lost me from the first page. When I read things like this, it helps me to look at my work differently. Try it.
  5. Know your audience. If you write sweet romance, then don’t go too heavy on the love scenes. Advertising a book as one genre, but the book actually leaning more in another direction can make readers not trust you. So, know who you’re pushing this book to. The same with mysteries turning into nothing more than a romance with nothing to solve. I’ve read books like this and it is disheartening. Also, make sure if the book is erotic, let the reader know.

I could keep going, but you need to get back to writing and so do I. But I hope this helped you a little.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Tuesday Teaser – The Knight of Her Heart

Good morning! It’s Tuesday, so it’s time for a teaser. Today I’ll give you a little background into the start of The Journal series. So, here goes:

June 1795 – Salem, Massachusetts

Marina Granger stood peering out the window. She loved her home at the end of the street in Salem. This was the house that she had built with the money from her herb shop on the square. The witch trials were long gone, but she was still thought of as a witch. Despite this, most revered her skills and sought her out when they needed healing from a large assortment of ailments.

As she stood watching the people of the town come and go, she began to think of her lost love. He’d been everything she’d ever wished for and in her heart, Marina knew that one day they’d be together again. She turned her back to the town and walked over to the table where she’d placed the three journals. With loving care, she ran her old, arthritic fingers over the leather-bound books. Even with her skills with herbs and such, she was unable to stop the advancing of age.

With a sigh, Marina lit a candle beside each book. She then reached in the pouch at her side, and sprinkled the contents over them as she spoke, sending a spell over the journals. Marina learned many spells from her grandmother, who’d lost her own grandmother in the horrid witch trials. Even though she’d been deemed innocent, the town clergy didn’t want to take any chances since she had healing powers.  With a flourish, Marina waved her hands over the table. A pleasant smile crossed her beautiful face as she thought of the three women from her bloodline that would find their way to the journals in the future. Their love would blossom as the spell took them back to the time period that they belonged in. It would be here that each one of them would find out what their special powers were and how to use them for good.

As she finished the spell, she could hear the men coming to run her out of town. The loud banging on the front door downstairs, had her grabbing her bag and the journals. She pulled a sconce on the wall to reveal the secret corridor in the wall. Marina placed the three journals on a ledge just inside the wall, smiling as she looked at them for one last second. Then she was gone to never be found again, at least not in her time period…

The Knight of Her Heart is the first book in this series, but in book four, you’ll get to find out Marina’s full story. It will be an adventure packed story.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Fall in love with this sweet time travel romance… It will make you want to find a journal of your own…


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Life steps in…

It’s Thursday, but it feels like Monday! Some days I wake up and just want to go back to bed, cover my head and sleep. Today is one of those days. But guess what, I’ve got a business to run and way too much to do for all of that. So, I managed to drag myself out of bed early so I could meet my morning word count. Did I meet it? Well, let’s just say I’ll have a writing lunch…

So, what is your day like? Recently I had the pleasure of doing an interview with Southern Writer’s Magazine, which will come out soon. It was eye-opening as I wrote out my answers to the interview questions. I realized that every day I manage somehow to schedule in some stress-relieving words. You may be saying, didn’t you already know that? Some days I think I don’t get enough time to write, but then others I get more than enough.

Yesterday I caught myself daydreaming about a character that has filled my head lately. Before I knew what I was doing, I was filling up stick it notes with character traits. Thank goodness I was waiting on a file to download, or I would’ve gotten behind. Then, the rest of the day, my eyes would go to those notes, wanting to write the story. Well, hopefully, today I’ll get to put a little work in on it.

Life steps in, but writing is part of that life, so make some time to focus on your dreams. This life is short, so make the most of it. Don’t forget to get up and walk some, it’s good for you and many writers don’t realize this. But that’s for another post.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

black ball point pen with brown spiral notebook

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Release day is coming!

Beyond One Moment Front cover

Good morning! It’s Thursday, which means it’s only a couple of days until the big release of Beyond One Moment. I enjoyed every moment of writing this one and can’t wait for all of you to fall in love with the Whispering Oaks Vineyard.

Here’s a little tidbit:

“This is amazing.” Vanessa couldn’t keep the awe out of her voice as she gazed at the natural wonder. The ground was covered in green moss where the sun didn’t come through the thick canopy of oak trees that covered the sky above.

“Listen for a moment.” Jason said, closing his eyes as he took in the peace of this place.

Vanessa leaned forward, “What am I listening for? All I hear is the water.”

“Such a city girl,” Jason laughed, “Listen as the wind rushes through the oaks above us.”

Vanessa sat quietly, straining to hear something, but what? Then the wind picked up, ruffling the leaves around them, then she heard something. It was a low murmuring like sound, but what was it. “It sounds like the trees are talking.” Vanessa said with a curious look on her face as she craned her head to hear it again.

“It’s what the Indians used to call, the whispering oaks. The wind comes down the mountainside, rushing through by the river. As it does, the sound of it going through the leaves and limbs sounds like whispering amongst the trees.”

I hope you enjoyed that small little tidbit. If you’d like to give a review for Beyond One Moment, please let me know and I’ll get you set up.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Throwback Thursday – Ghost Lover

Ghost Lover 2 full cover

Good Thursday morning! I hope all of you are well and happily writing. As for me, I’m waiting for the final edits of “Beyond One Moment” to come back.

Today’s Throwback Thursday is dedicated to ‘Ghost Lover’. This was the first book I published and still my baby. It’s had 3 covers and hit the bestseller’s list in its first year of release. My writing style has changed so much in six years.

Find Ghost Lover at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, AUX, iTunes, and others.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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Throwback Thursday – A family saga…

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Good Thursday morning! I know, I’ve been awol for over a week, but I have a great excuse. Between work (Accounting) and writing, plus my bathroom renovation, I’ve been out of pocket. But, I’m back. Did you miss me?

Today I want to talk about writing a family saga. If you’ve read my Five Oaks Ranch series, then you know it’s all about the Cauthen family. Each book explores the life of each sibling. You can’t help but fall in love with them. They have a personality all their own. Even a couple of times you might not like them, but then they pull you back in.

If you haven’t read this series, then grab a copy today. Ridge has been in the top 100 on Amazon for going on two years for Sagas and Anthologies & Collections. It’s amazing the rate that the others are selling. I’m in awe of the fascination my readers have for this series.

Have a great Thursday and remember, grab a book, it’s the best way to keep the mind busy and active…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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It’s Release Day…..

Breakwater Lane Front Cover

Good Thursday morning! It’s release day! Do I sound excited? Well, I am… Breakwater officially released today and I’m beyond excited. This series is so much fun to write and I can’t wait to hear from my adoring readers.

**Small Town Romance**

When Jordan Reed inherits her grandfather’s deli in small town Wishful Harbor, her life is turned upside down. Things start to look better when her childhood crush, Skylar, turns out to be her new contractor. When someone tries to intervene in Jordan and Skylar’s relationships the mysteries of Jordan’s family start to unravel. What she learns could change her life and her family’s reputation forever.

If you didn’t preorder your copy, it’s still only .99 for today only! So grab it now…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

https://www.amazon.com/Breakwater-Lane-Wishful-Harbor-Book-ebook

 

 

 


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Throwback Thursday – Time Travel

Finding the Right Time front cover

Good Thursday morning folks! Today I’m talking time travel. My book, Finding the Right Time is a mixture of contemporary romance, cowboy romance, and Time Travel. Some have even said maybe a little paranormal.

First, let’s start with this amazing cover. I thought my cover designer would quit when I told her what I wanted, but as usual, she waved her creative hand over it and made it. There are so many elements to this cover. It’s one of my favorites, along with the story behind the cover. It totally tells you that the story inside has many levels.

Ok, so on to the story. This is a time travel, but I went a bit further. What do I mean by that? Well, as I said, this came to me in a dream, so… This story goes back and forth in time, so, you have to keep up. Some readers really love this story and fell in love with the characters, but others said that the time changes had their heads whirling. But, I had to tell the story as it came to me. Those that love this book, love it fiercely. Honestly, I’ve read many time travel romances that flipped back and forth, it’s the way this one goes. But once you read it, you’ll understand why.

Here’s a little bit from Finding the Right Time…

He stood up and walked over to stand beside her. “I know this is going to sound crazy, but do you think that people sometimes do not cross over immediately?”

“I don’t know, why do you ask?” She looked back at the head stone. “Do you believe in ghosts?”

“I believe that when someone has unfinished business that maybe they stay here to finish that business. Maybe that’s what a ghost is, someone with unfinished business.” He watched her reaction to that and noticed that she looked a little perplexed.

“Are you saying there are ghosts here in the cemetery?” A shiver ran down her spine.

He noticed her shiver. “I’m just saying that sometimes we bring on things with emotions so when you read that head stone try not to get emotional.”

She laughed and looked back at him. “You’re kidding right.” She quit laughing when she saw his face. He wasn’t kidding and she’d hoped he was.

“I’m just preparing you for the emotions that may come over you if you’re sensitive.”

“I’ll take my chances.” She turned back to the head stone and read it. “Lilliana Faith Kennedy – Loving wife of Rafe, caring Mother, dedicated Friend. Born August 8, 1839 – Died November 20, 1899. Married on August 12, 1965. The love they shared will never die, but will last forever…” She sat back on her heels and tried to hide the tears that suddenly welled in her eyes. The words were so familiar to her and she couldn’t figure out why.

“I tried to warn you. I think it has a meaning more than just a saying on a grave marker. It carries a promise.” He looked down at her and he had a sudden feeling of protectiveness. Why did he feel like he knew her from another time? He didn’t want to tell her how he felt because it might scare her.

When he saw her the first time it was a hit in the chest. His heart beat so fast that he couldn’t even think straight. Was it just the fact that they both were sensitive to time?

She stood up and walked over to the old oak tree. It felt as though a slight vibration came from the old tree. She looked back to see if Anthony felt it, but he seemed preoccupied at the moment. She reached out and placed her hand on the bark. Then suddenly the wind picked up and the chimes got louder and louder.

Now, if that little snippet doesn’t make you shiver, then the following quote from the book will. By the way, this is one of my favorite quotes from all 35 of my books!

He bowed his head and shook it from side to side. “I don’t understand how a man that’s been dead for over one hundred years can just take over your heart. How can you even think about going back to him? If you love me, how can you love him too?”

See, what did I tell you? And of course, after reading this quote, I have to go back and read the book again. I know, I wrote it, but I love the story and the romance will leave you breathless as you try to figure out which one she will pick. As you reach the end of the story, you’ll realize something amazing about this love triangle…

As always, good reading and May God Bless You…