Feeling Christmas…

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My view as I write this morning. As Christmas draws near, I feel all smiley. I love Christmas, all the elements, the tree, the decorations, the lights, etc. I enjoy getting into the Christmas frame of mind. It would help if it wasn’t unseasonably warm here in Georgia.

Of course, as I sit here, writing this post, I’m thinking of the Savior’s birthday. That’s why I love to decorate and brighten up the whole house with the signs of Christmas because it’s a celebration.

Well, back to my writing. I’ve got a couple of projects in the making and hope to have them ready soon.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

It’s almost Christmas!

Good Monday morning folks were you ready for Monday yet! Me neither! As you know, I love my coffee, but this morning it’s not good at all. Since I was half asleep when I put the coffee together last night, it’s highly likely I put one too many scoops in the filter. Oh well, I’m still gulping it down with a cringe. I’ll probably be running on high octane in about an hour.

Can you believe that Christmas is almost here? It’s in a couple of days, are you ready? I have a couple of gift cards to purchase, then I’ll be ready to go.

I’m pleased to announce that I did what I promised myself I’d do, I finished the Five Oaks Series before Christmas. All 6 books came out this year! Whew, I’m exhausted, but happy with the results. The Christmas book actually rounded the whole series out, with little bits of everyone’s life joined into one book.

Since the series is complete, I’ve been taking a couple of days to take a breath and go over my schedule for 2016. Can’t wait to reveal some of the books in the works, but my assistant would have a coronary if I tell everything 😉

Speaking of my assistant, she’s home from college for Christmas, so she’s busy creating wonderful covers for upcoming projects and yes, I’ve promised to keep them secret, but it’s so hard. She even talked me into this really cool calendar/journal. It stays beside me all the time. All my publish dates, finish dates, proofing dates, etc. are in there!

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I just love it! The things inside of this fancy cover are top secret, well for a little while, but I’ll sneak some stuff out when I can.

So, are you finished shopping? Have you finished what you wanted to this year? If not, hop to it, the end of 2015 is almost here.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Picking the tree…

My son took me to the local Christmas tree farm Thursday. It was cold, but we had a long walk to the tall trees. We actually had an amazing time, laughing as we went from tree to tree, trying to find the perfect Hurt family tree.

As we walked among the trees, looking at aspects of the trees, it reminded me of editing a book. When we look at our manuscript, it’s with anxious eyes. We search for the holes in the story, like the holes in the tree that ornaments and lights can’t hide.

Then, of course, we look for the best branches to hold our ornaments. Same way with editing our story. We have to make sure that it’s a strong story and doesn’t fall off the edge of interesting. That’s a hard one, because we’re close to the story and love it. My editor assistant always finds these easily.

Oh, and don’t forget the straight stump! If you get home with a curved stump, well, it’s a disaster. If your manuscript doesn’t get the story straight, if it curves away from the story line, you’ll lose the reader.

So, today I’ll finish decorating my tree and yes, I’ll post many pictures. This is my favorite time of year, so my house looks like it threw up Christmas (my son’s words, not mine). I love my Santas, Snowmen, Angels, and Christmas village. So, I deck the halls!

As always, Great writing and May God Bless You…

Happy Saturday!

 

Let’s face it, it’s inevitable!

Good Wednesday morning! I hope all is with you and yours. This morning as I sat fanning away yet another hot flash, my mind was whirling. A couple of months ago I mentioned that possibly a series devoted to the 40 plus heroine and hero might be on my horizon. Well now that the Five Oaks Ranch series is almost to a close, or will be by Christmas, I’m rethinking that thought.

Face it people, every second we’re aging. I know, you’re making a face at the screen right now, but it’s reality. Most romance novels are written about the younger heroines and heroes, but what about those older adults that want to find love. In today’s world many older people are looking for love, so why not put some romance into it. Hey, I’m nearing that halfway mark and I still love romance. Good thing since I’m a romance author 😉

The series, of course will be about romance, but with a little humor sprinkled in. Since I’m in the lovely throws of menopause I can so relate to the characters that are pushing their way to the front of my writer brain. Why not have a menopausal heroine or a hero going through a midlife crisis? I think it would make good romance material.

So, what are your thoughts?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

What, it’s July already!

I don’t know about you, but for me time is flying! It seems like just yesterday it was Christmas and now we’re halfway to Christmas again. Guess it’s like my grandmother always said, time flies when you’re having fun.

Today as I sit here working on my latest manuscript I have to say I’m excited. As you know I am working on Chase and my historical romance, but I also have a surprise coming. It’s something totally out of my usual realm so I’m keeping it hush hush for a little longer. Let’s just say you’ll be pleasantly surprised, I hope.

What are you planning for July? Me, well we’re putting hardwood throughout our house starting in the next week. Yep, I said we’re doing it. I’m actually excited because we’re doing this as a family project. Thank goodness it’s a inside project because of the summer heat. I can’t wait to get a hammer in my hand and get to work. Well, I guess I’ll be allowed to hammer, but more than likely I’ll be handing wood to my hubby and son. Sometimes me and tools don’t work out so well.

Do you have some exciting plans for the 4th? I’m lazing away the day at the lake with family and food.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and my website for continued updates on my surprise!

https://www.facebook.com/StephaniePayneHurt

www.stephaniehurtauthor.com

The day after Christmas and all was…

It’s the day after Christmas and all is calm. The hubby and son have headed to the lake to fish out the day. I’m sitting watching Hallmark Christmas Romances and sipping coffee. It’s peaceful and serene as I sit here with a crackling fire and the Christmas tree twinkling beside me. I know the tree has to come down, but it’s always sad to see it. I love Christmas, but I do love the moments after everything is put back right and things are back to normal.

But for the Accountant in me, this is the calm before the storm. When I head back to the office after the first of the year it will be crazy as year ends are calculated, paperwork is sorted, tax files are put together, W-2’s are printed and the list goes on, but I love the rush and craziness. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true.

The writer in me is hard at work with a deadline coming up really soon. I plan on writing away my days off which is fine with me. As I fill out the story of Ridge Cauthen I have to smile. He’s such a hard man with a soft core, but he struggles with nightmares and the memories of everything he’s seen in the last seven years. Always the toughest of the siblings, he’s turned hard edged and even harder to get close to. For me he’s put a challenge in front of me and I’m enjoying it. Most of my main characters are loving and a little softer hearted, but Ridge totally blows that away.

I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas and also hope you were able to take some time for yourself.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Christmas Eve excitement…

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I love Christmas and everything that goes with it. This is my favorite time of year. It’s the time of year when families get together and celebrate their love. We remember our past Christmas’s and those that are not with us any longer. But most of all we celebrate the Birth of Jesus!

For me Christmas came a little early. Yesterday I received a call from a local bookstore. All of my books will be available starting in 2015 in that store. And they asked me to do an author signing for my new book that will be released on Valentine’s Day. So exciting. Yes I’m still smiling and giggling like a little girl. I will be letting you know more information as it comes in like dates and times, but for now I can say this is an exciting time.

Did anyone catch the release announcement in the last paragraph? If not, let me say it again. Ridge, the first book in the Five Oaks Ranch Series will be officially released on Valentine’s Day. This book has been a wonderful adventure for me. Since my last couple of books have not been about cowboys, it’s nice to come back to what I really love. I will be releasing excerpts periodically over the next month as the release date officially draws closer. Let’s just say this will be a new era in my writing. I’m stepping a little out of my usual box with this one, but I think my fans will be pleasantly surprised.

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I love this cover and all the covers for the series which have already been designed. The other four books will be announced soon as they’re finished and ready for release. Get to know the Cauthen family as this series unfolds into a series to remember. I think you’ll fall in love with the four brothers and their sister. Each one is different and full of struggles, love, laughter, family and most of all cowboys!

So, as I finish this post I want to wish each and everyone of you a very Merry Christmas! I hope you have a family filled night and that Santa visits with a smile. If things go well I’ll be publishing a Christmas Day post. Don’t forget the Reason for the Season…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You on this Christmas Eve…

Wrap up a Pirate for someone…

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Good morning all! It’s Tuesday and it’s cold here in Georgia. As I snuggle under my throw with my coffee at my side and the fire crackling I have to smile. It’s cozy and warm with Christmas cheer in my den. I love this time of year. The Christmas tree is twinkling beside me as though it’s saying Merry Christmas Stephanie!

As for presents, are you finished with your shopping? Me, well, almost, but I still have a couple of things to pick up. If you need a stocking filler or a gift for a reader, why not check out Safe in the Pirate’s Arms. It’s an adventurous love story with suspense, romance and pirates. Several readers have commented that they felt like they were on board the ship as I described every detail. I want my readers to experience the book, not just read them.

Here’s a little tidbit and then some links to buy:

Lightning streaked across the clouds just ahead of them. Caleb widened his stance and prepared for the battle with the storm. He’d been through worse.

The first drops of rain caused the men to move faster. All of the cargo had to be tied down. Serena helped by handing out coiled rope to the men. She never thought about the rain causing her clothing to cling to her body.

Caleb looked down to check the progress of the men when he noticed the boys clothing was wet. Then he did a double take. That wasn’t a boy at all, but a woman. A chill ran down his spine as he realized they had a major problem. Tom saw Caleb’s expression and followed his gaze. He swore when he saw what Caleb did. Caleb motioned for him to take the wheel.

He quickly made his way to where the woman stood handing out rope. Luckily the men were so busy that they didn’t notice. He spun her around and their eyes collided. “You need to get to your quarters.” When she just stood there he looked down at her soaked clothing. “Now!” He barked.

She looked down and saw the problem. It only took her moments to cover herself and run to her cabin. Caleb was on her heels. The look in his eyes was murderous and she knew it wasn’t going to be good.

As she opened the door and turned to shut it, he stopped it with his hand and followed her in. Then he slammed the door, leaving them alone in the small cabin. He made the cabin seem even smaller.

“What in the world were thinking? A woman on a ship with a bunch of men is dangerous and foolish.” He ran his fingers through his wet hair in exasperation.

“I was desperate.” She said in a small feminine voice.

His head snapped up in recognition. Reaching out he snatched the hat off her head causing her dark hair to tumble down around her shoulders. He grunted with frustration.  “Serena!”

She looked up at him and blushed. He turned around and grabbed the blanket off the bed. “Cover yourself.” He was a good man, but even he had his limits. “Why’d you stow away on my ship?”

Suddenly she burst into tears and sat down on the little cot. “I didn’t have anywhere else to go.” She started to openly sob.

He’d never been really good with women’s emotions. He sat down on the cot beside her and lifted her chin to look up at him. “What happened?”

“After you left last night, my mother died.” She sniffed and tried to get her composure. “Then I overheard my stepfather telling a man that he was going to end your trip and get you back for taking his shipments. He said he’d watch The Lady go to the bottom of the sea.”

He sat there for a moment. It was evident when he’d been at Edwards home that something was wrong. The man seemed crooked. It angered him that the man was part of the pirate’s that he fought against.

“My mother’s last words were that I needed to leave before my stepfather came upstairs. She said I was in danger. So I packed a bag and made my way down to the docks and then onto your ship.” She looked up at him pleadingly. “Please let me stay on the ship. I’ll work for my room and food. I won’t let anyone know I’m not Toby.”

Standing up quickly he looked down at her. He could only imagine why her mother was worried. That man was pure evil and he was glad she’d gotten away, but a woman on a pirate ship, even though his men were all good men, they were men.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Monday Thoughts and Writing…

Good Monday morning to you all… I hope you had a wonderful weekend. As for me it was a busy one. Saturday I spent the day at the Church decorating for Christmas with friends and then Sunday was the Children’s Ministry Christmas party. Let’s just say it was busy but satisfying. I’m pleasantly tired this morning…

As for my writing, I’ve grabbed a few minutes here and there this weekend to work on Ridge, but not as much as I would’ve liked. Ridge has been prodding my brain all weekend wanting his story told. For those of you that have messaged me about the upcoming release, let’s just say I’m working on a specific date, but as of now no release date yet. I’m thrilled that others are as excited as I am to have Ridge’s story published. It’s turning out to be quite a story and I can’t wait for you to read it.

Make sure you go to my website and enter the Rafflecopter to win a audiobook copy of Faith Through The Tears. Enter everyday if you want to. The response to this story has been really wonderful. On Audible.com I’ve had so many beautifully sweet reviews and some made me cry. This story tore at my heart one moment and made me giggle the next. One woman wrote to me and said that I should give away a box of tissues with every copy.

What are you doing on this fine Monday morning?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Wednesday Inspirations…

As I sit here sipping my coffee and looking at the twinkling Christmas tree I’m inspired to write. This is the time of day that I sit and write. The hubby is off to work and my son off to school. I have a little time to contemplate my newest WIP and work on edits, not to mention blog posts and social media catch-up.

This morning I’m working on Ridge. I’m already madly in love with him and his ornery ways. He’s pulled at my heart strings for weeks because he’s such a deep person with real problems. I can’t wait for all of you to fall in love with him. It won’t be hard and then of course he has three brothers and a sister that will pull you into their lives. Since I love cowboy romance it’s nice to be back to writing what I really love.

Unfortunately my brain is already wanting to write another Christmas romance, but no I refuse to jump into the frying pan. I just hope I can keep it all at bay for a little while. I do have something in the works for release before Christmas, but we’ll see how that goes.

What are you working on today?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…