Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Upcoming Release and Coffee

It’s Monday, all day long! Anyone else struggling this morning. Working on my second cup of coffee and pondering life. Then I realize that’s a little too deep for a Monday morning. So, I’ll just focus on putting one foot in front of another and getting some taxes done. Tax season is kicking my butt this year.

On an exciting note, I’ve set the release date for SAFE. It will be coming out on May 12th, but you can preorder it now for only .99. I can’t believe it’s almost release day. This novel took me on a wild ride into another genre and I’m not sure that I can go back. I love writing Mystery/Suspense/Romance. It’s the elements of danger, excitement, and a little romance that gives it the edge I’ve been looking for.

So, As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Friday Coffee Thoughts & Writing…

We made! It’s Friday people… As I sit here, sipping my coffee, I’m thinking about how many words I want to get in over the weekend. It’s the first weekend since before the holidays that we don’t have plans. That feels good too!

As for my writing, I’m finishing up Double Take At Mistletoe Ranch and getting ready to buckle down for the new series In Harm’s Way. It makes me excited to start the new series, which if you know me, then you know I’ve already started writing on it. But I’m ready to dig in and get to the roots of the first book, SAFE.

But, for now, I’ll leave you with a little tidbit from the upcoming new release, Double Take at Mistletoe Ranch…

Maddy came out of the hallway bathroom, holding a cool cloth for her forehead. “Baby, you’re making mommy feel rough.” Then she lovingly rubbed her flat abdomen.
“Honey, you’re carrying Denver’s baby, so that baby is probably kicking and screaming.” Annie said as she put her arm around Maddy’s shoulders.
“I won’t argue with that.” Maddy said, turning on her heel to run back in the bathroom.
The door slammed as Denver walked in the front door. “Is she sick again?” Denver’s brows arched in concern. “Annie, something is wrong, I just know it is.”
Annie gave him an affectionate shoulder rub. “Denver, this is part of the pregnancy. Just give it a month or two and she’ll be eating you out of house and home.”
“I can’t stand seeing her this sick.” Denver leaned against the door frame, lightly knocking. “Maddy, sweetheart, can I get you anything?”
Her voice was weak as she called from inside the bathroom. “Some cool water would be good, with a little lemon.”
“You got it. I’ll be right back.” Denver turned to go get the water.
“Just stay with her, I’ll grab her some water and soda crackers.” Annie went to the kitchen, leaving Denver listening for his bride.
Denver couldn’t stand this. He wanted to make things better, but he had no idea of what to do. He’d spent the last two days worrying about her and the baby. There was no way he was losing Maddy. She was the best thing that had ever happened to him. This was supposed to be the happiest time of their life, celebrating the upcoming birth of their first child. But it was turning into a nightmare.
The door opened as Maddy came out of the bathroom. Her face was pale and Denver was positive she’d lost some weight. And the fact that Maddy was already too thin, it only made his anxiety heighten.
“Let’s go in the den so you can lay down.” Denver put his arm around her shoulders, leading her into the other room. He draped a throw over her lap when she curled up in the corner of the couch. “Annie is getting you something to help.”
At that moment, Annie came in with a tray. “Maddy, these crackers may help some with the nausea.” Annie handed Maddy a plate with soda crackers on it. She placed the lemon water beside her on the table. “If you need anything else, just let me know. I’ll be in the kitchen getting lunch ready.
“Thank you Annie.” Maddy said in a raspy voice.
Annie gave her a motherly pat on her knee. “Don’t worry. The nausea will pass.”
“I hope so.” Maddy picked up a cracker and nibbled on it. She’d barely kept anything down for days. It surprised her that she didn’t feel hunger.
Denver sat beside her, not talking. He was too worried to talk. She was the love of his life and to see her so pale made him feel horrible for her. In a warped way, he blamed himself for this. She was pregnant and sick because of him. Then he reminded himself that it took two, but he still solely blamed himself.

The last book of the Mistletoe Ranch Series will have you laughing, crying, and wondering if Denver and Maddy will still hold the Mistletoe Ranch by the time I type The End. I love this story and can’t wait to get it out to my wonderful fans. Thanks for all the love that Mistletoe Ranch has received. It releases January 29th! Preorder today!

As always, good writing and may God Bless You…


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The last day of 2020…

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Happy New Year’s Eve everyone! This year has been so different from what we wished for only a year ago today. Life had changed for almost everyone and the way we do things is different. But life goes on and we have to make the best of every situation.

My writing has been going along fairly well, which is surprising to me. So many writers have said that this year has made them less productive. I’ve focused on the positive, giving someone else something to get lost in. Our goal as a writer is to entertain and make our fans feel as though they’ve been taken to another world, time, or place. That’s been my focus.

As I prepare to start 2021, there will be many changes coming. The new series, In Harm’s Way, will be one of those changes. It is something totally different from my normal sweet romance. The whole idea of the series is to help people find their faith even in a difficult time. And each one of the books explores a different type of disaster. It’s labeled a Christian Suspense Romance Series. I plan to take the reader on a journey of fear, love, faith, and excitement.

So, what are you doing to change things up for 2021?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Double Take at Mistletoe Ranch…

Good Sunday morning! I hope everyone is getting somewhat back to normal after the busy Christmas season. Me, I’m working on finishing up my next release, Double Take at Mistletoe Ranch. It’s the last book in the Mistletoe Ranch Series.

Now, if you haven’t read books 1 & 2, then you have time before the 3rd installment comes out at the end of January. Each book explores life of Denver and Maddy on the Mistletoe Ranch. This last one with have you wondering about how it will end. Here’s a little snippet from this book:

“Maddy, do you know how much I love you?” Denver said as he climbed into bed, curling up beside Maddy.
“I do, but I never grow tired of hearing it.” Maddy turned on her side to face her husband. She still had a hard time with the reality that this amazing man was her husband. They’d been married for over a year and he’d showed her everyday how much she meant to him. She’d never felt the depth of love that he had shown her.
Denver pulled her into his strong arms, “I love you more than you can even fathom.” He bent his head and kiss her forehead. Sometimes it scared him at how much he did love her. She was the light in his world and he couldn’t imagine life without her. Denver wasn’t sure how he breathed before she came into his life.
Maddy pulled the blanket up a little more. “It must be getting colder outside.” She shivered a little as the chill in the air ran down her spine.
“Here, let me get you warm.” Denver pulled her closer, feeling her tremble. “You’re not coming down with a cold are you?
“I don’t think so. But I have been feeling a little over for a couple of days. Maybe it’s the changing of the seasons.” Winter had been particularly bad this year. Maddy had thought the first winter here at Mistletoe had been rough, but she was sadly mistaken. The snow was double the amount this year that last. It was March, but outside looked like the middle of January. The early spring melting hadn’t started yet.
“Maybe so. But just in case, maybe you should drop in to see the doctor. I don’t want you getting sick.” Denver held her in his warm arms, wrapping them both in the thick blanket that was on their bed.
In a few minutes, she began to warm up. Maddy slipped into a light sleep as his body warmth helped to sooth her. She’d been feeling strange lately. That morning as she was making their bed, a dizzy spell came over her. For a moment she had to hold onto the bed post until the spell went away. But she brushed it off as exhaustion from her lack of sleep.
Denver kissed the top of her head. The thick blanket was making him sweat, but he wouldn’t let go of her until he was sure that she was warm enough. He’d noticed slight dark circles under her eyes this morning at breakfast. Was she working too hard at the barn? Ever since the newest calves had come in, she’d been in the barn every day, feeding them and taking care of them. She was trying to take the place of their mother. Maybe he needed to get her to stay home tomorrow and rest. But he knew his wife and that wouldn’t be happening, unless he tied her to the bed post.
Sometime around midnight, Maddy woke up feeling sick to her stomach. She slid out of bed, not waking Denver. She tiptoed across the wooden floor to the bathroom, closing the door quietly behind her. Maybe the beef tips and gravy she’d ate for dinner had been too much on her stomach. For a minute she sat on the edge of the huge tub. As another wave of nausea swept through her, she leaned forward, letting her head fall between her knees.
The sound of the door opening made her look up. Denver was leaning in the doorway, looking half asleep. “Baby, what’s wrong?”
“I felt a little sick at my stomach.” Maddy said as she stood up and grabbed a washcloth. After she ran some cool water over it, she wiped her face. “I think dinner didn’t set too well.”
Denver came into the bathroom and put a hand to her forehead. “You don’t feel feverish. There’s some medicine in the medicine cabinet for nausea.”
“I’ll take some and see if that helps. It could just be a bug.” Maddy shrugged. She never got sick.
When he went back to bed, she opened the medicine cabinet that was on the wall between the mirrors over the vanity. She pulled the nausea medicine out and poured some into the dosage cup. It was thick and just the sight of the thick medicine made her feel like she was about to vomit. She managed to get it swallowed, but it took everything in her to keep it down. There was no way she would be getting any sleep right now. And if she stayed in the bathroom, Denver would get back up to check on her. He needed his sleep.
Maddy walked down the stairs and went into the den to sit by the fire. The warmth at her back was nice and calming. As the nausea medicine started to calm her stomach, she got up and laid down on the couch, pulling the thick throw off the back. The warmth of the fire and the thick throw soon had her sound asleep.
Denver woke her just before daylight. “Maddy, are you feeling better?”
With a lot of effort, Maddy opened her eyes. “A little.” She sat up, rubbing her eyes. “I must have fallen asleep.”
“Why don’t you stay home today and get some rest?” Denver said as he sat down on the edge of the couch.
Maddy shook her head with a frown. “After a long hot shower and some food, I’ll be good as new.”
“Maddy, don’t push yourself too much. As you said last night, you’ve been feeling a little off the last couple of days. If you’re coming down with a cold, then rest is the best medicine.”
“Ah, it’s just the change of the seasons.” Maddy pushed past him. “I’ll be down in a little bit for breakfast.”
The hot shower helped some. She walked into the kitchen and the scent of the frying bacon hit her nose. A wave of vicious nausea swept through her, taking her by surprise. She had to put her hand over her mouth and run to the hall bathroom.
Denver came through the door, reaching down to hold her hair as she heaved. The nausea was like nothing she’d ever felt and every time she raised her head, it came over her again. When she was able to sit back on the floor, her eyes were filled with water and she felt weak.
“I’m taking you back to bed.” He reached down and swung her up into his arms. On the way past the kitchen door, Maddy put her face into his shirt to keep from smelling the food. Her stomach lurched violently at the hint of food.
Annie followed him up the stairs. “Maddy, do you want me to make you some dry toast? It might settle your stomach.”
Maddy nodded, “Thank you.”
Denver turned to Annie in concern. “Do you think she has a bug?”
“Could be. But several people in town have the flu, so it could be that too.” Annie walked over to feel Maddy’s forehead. “You don’t feel warm. Do you have a sore throat?”
“No. I’m just nauseated.” Maddy groaned as just the mention of nausea made her stomach churn.
“Just stay in bed and I’ll get that dry toast and a little coffee. Maybe something on your stomach will help.” Annie went out the door.
“Alright, that’s it. I’m calling the doctor.” Denver said as he pulled his phone out of his pocket.
“Denver, if it’s just a virus, then there’s no use in bothering the doctor.”

I hope you liked this small look at the last book of this series. It will be released on January 29th! But you can preorder it now at https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08DFBY6PR.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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If your story falls apart, use Duct Tape!

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Duct tape is a house staple, just as salt, sugar and flour are food staples. For many years people have fixed almost everything with duct tape. At Church we even fixed a broken Christmas tree with duct tape, no really we did. It’s strong and durable. Also you can get it in any width and color so it’s versatile.

What if your story is falling apart? We all have those manuscripts that start out really good and we have a phenomenal ending planned, but the middle has so many holes and fractures that it puts a real stink on the beginning and ending. Well, put a little duct tape on it. What am I talking about? Well, here goes the answer in a nutshell.

By duct tape I mean sit down with your beginning and ending. Then really look at it. Where is the character headed? The middle needs some suspense or issue that needs to carry the reader over the hump to the end. It needs something that only the ending can shed some light on. This is where the duct tape comes in.

As I said above, duct tape is strong and durable with lots of versatility, so the middle of the book needs to be taped up neatly. But be careful not to just add fluffy filler that makes the reader fall asleep with boredom. If the first of the book is power packed, then make the middle explode with tension. This is the strong duct tape. Add an element of complete surprise. Let the main character have a major problem that needs solving, or maybe a secret that is threatening to come out, but the secret has to be life altering.

But make sure that it can mesh with your great ending. I did this one time and a book that started out being only around 30,000 words went over 50,000 words with a little duct tape application. Crazy, but true. I had this really great beginning that pulled you in and the ending left you breathless, but the middle was just a bunch of fluff. As I did my first read through I was almost dozing and that’s not good. I sat down and spread out the beginning and ending, then totally restructured my characters. I added a whole new dimension to them that took them on an adventure that meshed well with the ending and soon I had a complete story that I was proud to hit the publish button on.

So, get you some duct tape and pull that story together. If you use the right duct tape it will hold together nicely.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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In the Right Order…Or NOT!

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Happy Thanksgiving week! It’s Monday, so forgive me if I ramble a bit. After a busy weekend, I need multiple cups of coffee just to get my eyes open. But, for now, let’s talk writing.

Do you have to do things in the right order? Well, it’s according to what you’re doing. You can’t bake a cake before you make the batter. You can’t ice a cake before you bake it.

With writing, you can write the ending before you write the beginning. How? For some writers, they have to get the last scene written in order to get a grip on the first three fourths.

I’ve posted several things on outlines and writing technique. And I’ve always said, put your ideas together, so that you know where you’re headed. Before you ask, yes, I’ve written the last scene of a book first. Of course, when I did, the ending changed slightly as the first parts were written and put in place.

Since I write in Scrivener, sometimes I go ahead and put in the Chapter heads that go with my outline first. That way I can write different scenes ahead of time. If I get stuck on a certain part, sometimes skipping ahead helps to beat writers block.

The goal of the post is to let you know, it’s alright to write your book in the wrong order. Just make sure that it fits together like a puzzle. The pieces need to fit, but not forced.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Wednesday Warm Thoughts…

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It’s mighty cold here in Georgia on this Tuesday morning. As I write this post, the fire is crackling and popping in the fireplace, keeping me toasty warm. Do you enjoy a good fire on a cold morning?

For me, sitting by a warm fire inspires me to write more. Why is that? I love to come down the hall on cold mornings and hear the crackling fire. As soon as I have a cup of coffee in my hands, I stand in front of the fire, letting it warm me to my soul. It’s a wonderful feeling.

Not to mention I’m finishing up the last of my Christmas romance, which comes through easier with a cozy fire. Now just to get up my Christmas tree and decorations. But that will have to wait until after the upcoming busy weekend.

Enjoy every moment… Listen to the crackle of a fire… Give yourself a moment every day to just be…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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3 reasons to plan out your story…

After a day trip to the North Georgia mountains yesterday, I feel refreshed and exhausted. Why is it that when you take a long, although beautiful drive, it just drains you? That’s kind of how a story without a plan can do to writers. As in the picture below, without a plan, your story could collapse around you and leave you with something that is unstable.

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As you’ve read over and over in my blogs, I try my best to plan out as much of my books as possible. So, here are my three top reasons that I do that:

  1. Map out the story. In my opinion, and opinions vary like the fall leaves, but my thoughts are this. If you map out the story, you know, get the feeling of the ups and downs, then you can build the ebb and flow better. It helps to keep your focus on the writing, not the building up of the plot.
  2. Character development. I have to plan my characters. Although some of their flaws don’t come out until midway of the story. But most of my character development is done beforehand. I need to get to know them so that I can correctly write their stories.
  3. Know your ending. And yes, sometimes the ending sneaks up on you out of the blue and everything changes. That’s writing. BUT, when you get started, have an idea of where your story is headed. When stories come into my head, I most of the time, see the beginning and the ending first. Sometimes it’s the ending that pulls the story into my heart. If the characters are to be wed at the end, then you need to make the rest of the story head in that direction.

So, as I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, this may not work for everyone, but it does for me. I’ve already got the bones of the five books of the series I’m doing in 2021. Everyday my mind goes through the storylines, the character details and yes, where I want each book to end.

I hope my post helps you get past your writers block or maybe just helps you develop your story more.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Friday Sneak Peek…

Can you believe we made it to Friday? It’s been a long and crazy week. But here we are, Friday again…

So, as many of you know, I plan my books ahead of time. It just keeps me from going crazy. I have got a new series coming out in 2021 and there will be five books. My plan is to only publish those five, which is something I haven’t done in a while, publish that few books. But, this will be a longer more detailed series than I’ve ever written.

You may be asking, what is different about this new series. Well, it’s a Christian Suspense Romance series. I’m not ready to give you a look at the completed covers, which are amazing. I have the best cover designer. And I’m not ready to give you the titles or the series name. So, what is the post giving you a sneak peek of? Glad you asked…

I have two more books left in the schedule for 2020. One of them will actually come out in January, but it’s from my 2020 schedule. This has been an unusual year, and we’ll leave it at that. But it did a lot to my writing schedule that I had no control over.

Tomorrow is release day for Bay Street, the last book in the Wishful Harbor Series. And the first week of December will be the release of Wine, wedding, and The Cowboy, the last book in the Tangled Vines Series. Then last, but certainly not least, in January will be the release of Double Take At Mistletoe Ranch, the last book in my bestselling Mistletoe Ranch Series. That’s a lot of series to close out, but with the new series coming out, I needed some closure.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be releasing a little bit about each of the five new books coming out in 2021. Let’s just say, I’m stepping out of my comfort zone with these. It will take a lot out of me, mentally. But I’m so excited about it. This series has been coming to me for a couple of years, but I just wasn’t ready to do it. Now I am. So keep watching for exciting news to come.

As always, Good Writing and May God Bless You…

I’ll leave you will the last three covers of this writing year!

Releases November 7th
Releases December 4th
Releases January, 29, 2021


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Christmas on my mind…

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Who else is ready for Christmas season to get in full swing? I can’t wait to smell the scent of our fresh cut Christmas tree. Or the scent of gingerbread baking. And let’s not forget the peppermint mocha warming our bellies.

I love everything about Christmas. And writing a Christmas romance always fills my soul with happiness. There’s something about a couple finding romance during the Christmas season that makes everything else seem to just disappear.

There is nothing more special than sitting by the tree with the twinkling lights and Christmas music playing in the background. Oh and let’s not forget the hot chocolate with little marshmallows. And yes, I know you can have that any time of the year, but at Christmas, it’s so much better.

So, what are you most excited about for Christmas?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…