Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Monday Morning Writing

It’s Monday morning and the kids should be going back to school today, but due to the extremely cold weather and threat of snow they will not be going back until Wednesday. I’ve moved my office into my dining room since it’s so cold. My office is hard to heat sometimes so it’s just easier to work where it’s warm.

I do hope all my US friends are staying warm and safe in this cold and snow snap. We didn’t get any snow here south of Atlanta, but North Georgia got a little bit. It’s just cold and windy.

As for my writing I’m first working on balancing some year end accounts and then back to the writing. I hope to have Finding the Right Time completed with the second edit tonight. The 2nd installment in three of my series are well on their way, but the holidays got in the way. Now that it’s somewhat back to normal I hope to get in some quality writing time. I sat last night with my hands poised over the keys but nothing came through my fingers. Writer’s block is not a fun thing when you have some time to write and nothing comes through.

Of course this morning my mind is on overload with stories, but alas my accounting work needs to be done first. It does help pay the bills and as many writers know, the writing doesn’t do that in most cases. I’m playing with the idea of sending Finding The Right Time to a publisher, but still not sure. I’ve always self published and noticed many big writers are going back to self publishing. It just makes me wonder if that’s the right course. I’ll have to do a list of pros and cons.

Oh well, this isn’t getting this account balanced. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll have power and can post an update on Finding The Right Time.

If you get a chance go over to Amazon and check out my writer friend from Georgia, V. Steele. She’d just released the 2nd book in her My Prodigy Trilogy. I usually don’t read this kind of romance, well I do read vampire books, but hers are a little racey but well written. She just laughs at me. I guess I love her work because she uses my publishing company for editing and covers. My brilliant and talented cover designer has outdone herself lately with V’s covers and the one for Finding The Right Time. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Feeling a little overwhelmed…

If you’ve followed my blog you’ve heard me speak of my editor and assistant quite frequently. Well, it’s with a very proud, but sad heart that I do this post today. She’s also my niece and has worked with me for about 5 years. She’s been my right hand, my cover designer, my editor, my shoulder on many occasions, and my friend. 

She’s been accepted to the University of Georgia and will be leaving me. I’m so proud of her. She’s been going to college locally for 2 years. Now she’ll be moving to Athens, Georgia which is a couple of hours away. Her major is Poultry Sciences.

We have three more work days together and I feel like I have to get every cover designed for all the works in process. She’s reassured me that we’ll work via internet and phone. Also we’ve started up a publishing business as partners so we’ll be working long distance together.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m very proud of her and this is her dream, but I’m sad to lose her. I know she’ll go really far and one day she’ll be at the top of her career. So this is a shout out to her. She’s amazing.

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


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Steps to Writing a good story…

Ok, so we’ve all wrote a story at some time or another. Whether it’s a school report or as a writer. But have we ever sat down and thought about the steps it takes to write a story, good or bad?

As a writer I’ve got several things I do. First, I’ve got to be inspired. I have people all the time telling me to write about this or that. Well, for me it doesn’t work that way. It’s got to come to me in one way or the other. Sometimes it’s in a dream or just a daydream. Those are the best. My novel “Ghost Lover” came to me in a dream. Well most of it anyway. It was as though I was possessed by the stories and characters. They ruled my life for a while as I put the thoughts in my laptop.

Second, most of my books have had a general outline. When a story idea comes to me I immediately try to sit down with pen and paper and write down the story in outline form. This way I don’t forget the basics. It would be nice to sit in one sitting and write a finished novel. If you have, please relay the story to me? What’s funny is sometimes as the story evolves so does the outline. Most of the time I make each line in the outline into a whole chapter.

Third I write a character sketch. As I get older my memory slips some 🙂 I hate to constantly be going back in the story to remember a name or place. As I add to a character or introduce a new place or person I write it down. This helps speed up the process.

Fourth, now this is the important part. If you’re writing and you lose the momentum in a certain spot, just make a note of a key spot to come back to. Then go forward and most of the time that inspires you to go back and finish the lost spot. Most of the time continuing the story helps. I usually know the outcome of the part, but the middle is somewhat fuzzy. Writing the ending helps to give you inspiration for the middle.

Fifth, keep the interest. Don’t give away the ending mid way. That really makes a story dead to me when I’m reading a book and the author gives away the whole story by the middle of the book. Then the ending just goes stale. So keep the momentum building. Maybe even have several momentum building moments that build on each other.

Sixth, the writing process does not end with the words “The End”. I’ve said this in several blogs. It is very important to read your story to yourself, even out loud. If you just finish and hand it to your editor, you’ve left off a big step. Every time I read a story over it brings on extra thoughts. I’ve added whole chapters just in one reread. Do it, don’t leave it to the editor. You’re the writer, take charge.

Seventh, Now that you’ve reread and rechecked details, now you’re ready to hand it to the editor. To me this step is the hardest, you’ve got to write a description. How on earth do you condense a huge novel or even a short novella to a couple of lines? Well, make sure you leave the reader guessing. If you give away the whole plot on the back of the book why would they want to read the book itself?

Eighth, so the writing is over, the editor has it and you’ve got the description. Now if you haven’t already set up the cover, now’s the time. Make sure the cover has something to do with the book. A vampire on the cover isn’t good if the book is about a horse ranch. Make it interesting and eye catching. Yes, you’ve got to pay a little to get the good pictures, but it’s well worth it. My first couple of covers were totally stocked pics from office. Not cool!. After they were published I said “YUCK”. My editor is an awesome cover designer. I tell her what I have in mind and she usually finds the pictures for me based on my idea. What’s funny is the latest book ‘Rekindled Flame’ had a completed cover before I was anywhere near finished.

Ninth, now just sit back and wait for the finished product. Go publish it and enjoy the knowledge that you’re a published author. Don’t worry at this moment if someone likes your work. Just check that off your bucket list. Wait a little while before you worry about if people like your work. Remember you’re going to have those that don’t like your style writing and others who love it. Go with you gut and enjoy yourself. If you get nothing but bad reviews you might want to recheck your work, but if you get good and bad then you’ve probably done alright.

These are just the steps I go through, maybe you do your steps totally different. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You!