Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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A little Thursday Throwback…

As writers, sometimes we forget about our back titles. Well, we don’t exactly forget about them, but sometimes we push them aside for our newer titles. I was cleaning out some files and was thrown back to when I first started publishing my work in 2012. It was an amazing time as well as stressful. But those older titles are what got me to this point. They are not as polished as my newer books, but they are where I started.

So, with that being said, I want to throw it back to my first published book. It was reworked several years ago, but it still holds a place in my heart. Also, it came from a story that I started way back when I was a teenager.

Let me reintroduce you to Ghost Lover.

The dying words of Jess’s mother are for her to find the love of her life. But with an overbearing father, will she have that chance? When he gives her a horse and riding lessons for her 21st birthday, her life changes. Is the cowboy behind the Black Stetson her soul mate? When her father’s partner decides to stake claim on her, who will win the fight? Suspense, tragedy, romance and a stranger in the shadows lead to a dramatic final showdown in Ghost Lover…

And then there’s the letter!

There have been a couple of covers for this one. Let’s go from first to current…

I love the newest cover. If you’re interested in falling in love with their story, then drop by amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Ghost-Lover-Revised-Stephanie-Hurt-ebook/dp/B00NDI5AYW

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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A Series Beyond Time…

It’s Wednesday and I’m up for a little self promotion… Today I’m talking time travel. Have you ever wished to go back to another time and place? Maybe you’ve wanted to go ahead in time to see how something turns out. If you could go back to the time when knights sat at the round table, cowboys rode the old west, or gold rush, would you? What if it meant you’d find the love of your life that you’ve been searching for?

The Journal Series takes you back in time. Each book has a different story, but all are joined by the same story. It’s a powerful spell that sends each woman back to another time and place. So, sit back and check out The Journal Series.

How it started:

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…

Book 1 – The Knight of Her Heart

Can an age-old spell change the course of time?
Willa Granger, an antique dealer from Salem, doesn’t know how her life is about to change when she inherits a journal from her great-great-grandmother. The journal has a spell on it. The moment Willa begins to write in it, she’s transported back to medieval Ireland. She finds herself on a grassy hill beside the sea, unsure of what’s just happened.
That’s where Sir Rolfe Gawain, a Knight in the king’s court, finds her. He’s suspicious of her clothing and the way she speaks, but something inside of him wants to protect her. With growing tensions at the palace regarding witchcraft, he must keep the way she says she arrived a secret.
They soon find themselves on the run from the king as suspicions arise about Willa’s sudden appearance. But as they sail across the sea to England, a bond grows between them that is unshakeable. Just when they think all is well, they are captured, and Willa’s life is threatened. The couple makes a difficult choice. Will it separate them forever? Will they find their way back to one another?
This is the first book in the time travel series, The Journal.
Marina placed the three journals on the table, then lit a candle beside each. She reached in the pouch at her side and sprinkled the contents over them as she spoke, sending a spell over the journals. With a flourish, she waved her hands over the table. A smile crossed her face as she thought of the three young 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. Loud banging on the front door had her turning and leaving through the secret hatch in the floor, which is where she left the three journals. Then she was gone to never be found again…

Book 2 – The Cowboy of Her Dreams

Have you ever read a book and wished to go back to that time period? Or maybe you dreamed of finding happiness with a man from that time? What if you could make it happen?

Rain, a book editor from New York, is taken back to the old west where she meets Sloan Weatherby, a rancher in the 1850’s. Ever since childhood, Rain had read western romances and dreamed of living in Texas during the 1800s.

She’d always imagined being the wife of a rancher with work-roughened hands and a heart bigger than Texas. When she opens her eyes after writing in the journal, Sloan rescues her from a runaway stagecoach, their story begins. But, life in another time isn’t easy, especially when his past comes back to haunt him.

Rain begins to think maybe she made the wrong decision. Can love keep her in the old west or will she open the journal and go back to New York, never to look back?

Book 3 – The Pirate of Her Desire

Sometimes when a dream becomes reality things don’t turn out as you imagined.

Since the first romance novel Amber read, she’d always dreamed of living on a pirate ship and capturing the heart of the captain. When the journal sends her to 1750 where she comes face to face with captain George Drake she realizes she might be headed for disaster. Is she prepared for the life on a real pirate ship versus the romanticized versions she’d always read in novels?

Captain George Drake, the most well-known pirate of his time can’t believe his eyes when he sees Amber on his ship. He is filled with anger but one look into her blue eyes and he’s not sure what he is going to do with his beautiful, feisty stowaway. Tensions rise as he struggles to hide this woman from his crew and keep her safe in the midst of a harsh battle. Can he make himself believe a simple journal brought her to his ship?

Will he risk the respect of his crew and everything he has worked toward for the woman that has dropped into his life or will he send her back to her own time? Will he be able to let her go? Will he have a choice?

Their story is action-packed but will unfold into a love story to last for all time.
This short book is a love at first sight romance… Sometimes it only takes a moment to know your heart!

Book 4 – Marina’s Story – A Timeless Love

The final book of The Journal Series is a short story about the woman that created the Journals.

One spell, two hearts, three journals, four epic love stories.

Marina was known as a witch in Boston, but to those that knew her best, she was a healer. From the moment she first went back in time using an ancient journal, she knew that life would never be the same. The man she met was beyond anything she’d ever known.

Ryland, a blacksmith living in a little French village in the early 1600’s knew from the moment he saw Marina that she was his true love. But the local king also loved Marina and would do anything to have her as his own.

They are forced to hide away where they start their happy life, or so they thought… When Marina is forced back to 1739 Boston she must do everything in her power to keep her daughter safe.

In a time where witches were still seen as a threat, Marina will make a decision that will impact generations to come.

And who knows, you may find one of the journals one day and get sent to your true love… Anything can happen when love is involved. Happy reading!

You can get them separate or in a box set!

So, hope you enjoyed the look into The Journal Series. You never know, there may be a journal waiting for you somewhere.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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First book FREE – It works!

It’s a rainy morning in Georgia, which calls for extra coffee. Monday’s are hard, but especially when it starts out rainy and dreary. But, life goes on, so let’s get this day going.

Free books make some authors shudder, but making the first book in a series free can give you that boost that you need. Some authors opt not to offer the first book in a series for free and that’s alright too. Just having a series that readers can fall in love with is good too.

Why is it good to offer the first book for free? I tried this with the first book in the Five Oaks Ranch Series. At first I was skeptical, but then I realized that it was the best decision for this series. The fact is that the rest of the series sells great following the free downloads of Ridge, the first book that is free. And this series has become my best selling series yet.

Here’s the catch. Don’t you just hate a catch. If you offer a book for free, make sure that it is edited well. Why? Because a free book that has a tantalizing cover and blurb will fly off the shelves. People love something for free. And if the book is well written and firmly edited, it will gain you a fan for the rest of the series. Readers love a good series that can draw them into a world created in the series. If they love it, then they’ll buy the rest of the series.

Here’s a look at Ridge. Fall in love with the Cauthen family in this sweet series that follows the lives of the five siblings and their ranch.

Ridge was the first one up the next morning. He needed to check the cattle in the far pasture and make sure the newborns were doing well. When he walked into his office in the stable with his coffee he was surprised to see Mallory walking up from the stalls.

“Good morning.” She said as she stepped into his office. “I didn’t expect to see anyone this early.”

“What are you doing here so early?” He sat down and took a long drink of his hot coffee.

“I’ve got an early meeting with a ranch across the county and needed to check on Chase’s horse. He thought he might have something wrong with his back leg, but it was just a little strain. I’ve iced it up and left Chase a message on what he needs to do when he gets to the barn.”

“That man rides his horses too hard. I’ve always told him to be easier on them.” His younger brother was the wilder one, thinking about nothing but the rodeo.

Mallory laughed, causing his heart to skip a beat. “Chase has his head set on the rodeo. I’ve tried to convince him it’s not a good idea, but he doesn’t listen to me.” Rolling her eyes as she spoke.

Suddenly Ridge was jealous of his brother, but why? Was it because Mallory was having conversations with him? Did they have something together? Ridge’s heart hurt at the thought. He used all his strength to push it out of his head.

“Well, Chase does have a stubborn streak.” He commented as he looked down at his desk.

“Yes, he does. But I hear your stubborn streak is worse.” She said in a quiet voice.

His head snapped up at her comment, causing him to become defensive. “I take it Maggie has been talking more than need be.” He’d have a conversation with his meddlesome little sister.

“I didn’t mean to make you mad, it was just an observation.” Struggling with her better judgment, she continued. “You seem really high strung and tense. Maybe you need to have some fun, get out and live a little.”

Ridge leaned back in his chair as he studied the woman standing in front of his desk. “And what do you suggest I do for fun?” The look he sent her way made her step back a bit.

This man made her squirm with something she’d never felt before and she couldn’t quite put a hand on it. Was it anger, envy, or interest? “I don’t know what you like to do.” She shrugged as she backed up to the doorway. “There’s a dance in a couple of weeks. You could always find a date and go let off some steam on the dance floor.”

“Oh I can think of several things to let off steam, but going to a crowded dance doesn’t come to mind.” He watched the blush creep up her neck and cover her beautiful face.

Mallory stammered with her reaction to his comment. “I was just making a suggestion.”

“Well, thanks for the evident concern, but I’m handling my ‘stress’ just fine.” He stood and walked over to where she was rooted to the floor. “Are you offering to help me release my stress?”

She gasped and looked up into his gorgeous eyes, mesmerized by his nearness. Clearing her throat she found her voice. “No, not at all, just commenting on the obvious.”

Ridge grinned devilishly, and walked past her, headed toward his horse. “Have a good morning, Mallory.” The parting words spoken over his shoulder in humor, as he gave himself a silent high five, realizing he still had it.

Mallory propped on the door frame to gain her senses. That man had the ability to make her speechless and that was a hard thing to do. She straightened and headed for her truck. Her heart was pounding like a thunderstorm in her chest as she pulled herself up into the truck. What a start to the day?

Ridge stepped into his horse’s stall with a grin. He’d made her stammer and blush. Maybe now she’d get the picture. He was unapproachable and happy to be alone for the time being. Women weren’t off the table for him, but at the moment it wasn’t advisable.

I hope you liked this small look into Ridge, the first book of the Five Oaks Ranch Series. It’s FREE on Amazon, so fall in love with this series by clicking this link. And think about making one of your books free to kickstart sales.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Thursday Cowboy Throwback…

In a world of corporations, concrete, and business suits, there are still cowboys. I love writing about them because to me, they are a dying breed. As long as time can remember, there was cowboys.

With every cowboy I write, I try to make them as real as possible. Since I personally know a lot of cowboys, I have lots of examples of what a true cowboy is. It’s more than the jeans, cowboy boots and Stetson. They are true men that are hard workers, rough handed, and down right tough guys. That’s the ones that are the real thing.

Each one of my cowboys that I’ve written has encompassed one of the cowboys I know. One cowboy I knew was an older man with that weathered skin, keen eye, and cowboy swagger. He was the epitome of an old world cowboy. There was never a conversation that we had that didn’t involve a horse. I loved every minute of each conversation. But now he’s gone, and I long for those conversations.

So, do you love cowboys? Maybe you know one, or even married to one. Let’s give it up for cowboys this Thursday!

As always, Good writing and May God Bless You…


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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…


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Throwback Thursday – Writing…

Good Thursday morning! If you’ve read my posts, you know I need my coffee, meaning I need caffeine in the morning… With that said, I let us run out of coffee… Yes, I know! Why? Why? Why? I found a bag of coffee my mom gave us, but it’s decaffeinated, yikes! I was a walking zombie until I remembered the Keurig coffee I had. Yay! I’m back to the living and think I can function today…

So, on to the post of the day… It’s Throwback Thursday and why not do a post on my back stock books. Now, just a little reminder, a couple of these were from my early days of writing, sooooo, let’s just say, my style has changed.

The first book I officially published was Ghost Lover, which has recently been revised… This book has my heart, just sayin’ … And the Facebook page for this book has exceeded the follows on all of my pages, it’s been amazing.

Then there was Tender Flames… Ahhh, yes, one of my hearts too. This story played with my mind for a long time before I finally put it on paper (Years before it was published). This too has been revised…

 

Moonbeam & Roses made me cry. I used up several boxes of tissues with this one. It pulled at my heartstrings and from the reader response, it pulled at others too…

Finding the Right Time came to me in a dream… I had to get it on paper as soon as I woke and it was written fairly quickly. It’s in the revision process at the moment, and will be redone soon. But, the story is fun and different, but overlook the style of writing. Yep, I was gaining my voice… Enough said… This was by far the hardest cover to design..

And last but not least, one of my oldest published novels, A Love Never Lost. This book made it to the second round of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest… That was a thrilling time, but it’s sad they stopped doing that contest.

 

So, that’s my Throwback Thursday… Hope you enjoyed it. It was a pleasant trip down my publishing memory lane.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Five Oaks Ranch…

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Good Wednesday morning folk! I do hope all is well with you and yours. As for me, it’s the beginning of my busy season. Since I’m an accountant, and tax season is now up and running, well, that means I’m a busy lady. Not to mention I have a couple of book deadlines looming too…

Today I want to talk about my Five Oaks Ranch Series. Even though Ridge has been out for coming up on three years, it’s stayed in the top 100 Free books for almost a year. The rest of the series is doing well too…

A little back story into this series… When this series came to me, we were driving back from our Florida vacation. I’d been playing with ideas for a cowboy series, and I wanted it to be based around a family, but I didn’t have the exact specifics. As we drove into Georgia, I was sitting there, lost in thought when street signs started coming into my view. At once, I knew it would be based in Georgia. Then the names started flashing by, my mind whirling with ideas. At that moment, Five Oaks Ranch was born.

By the time we arrived home about one and a half hours later, I had the book names, the cover ideas and had started my character sketches. Of course, I can’t write and ride because I’d turn green, but I had my notepad beside me. I wrote on it without looking, as the words streamed in, almost at once.

When we arrived home, I had to unpack, but my mind was still on beginning Ridge. I have to say, Ridge’s popularity has surprised me. The outpouring of support for this book and the series has been humbling, to say the least. This series came straight from my heart and from the responses I’ve received by email and direct message, it’s touched others.

My writing style has changed a lot since I published Ridge. I’ve studied writing a lot, as most writers do. Some of the things I’ve learned have spilled out into my writing. The first book, Ridge and the second book, Oakley are different in the style of writing, but it still has my heart in it.

To say I’m excited about where the Five Oaks Ranch will go in the future is an understatement. I’ve received emails from readers that would love to see it on the big screen as one big movie or mini-series. Now wouldn’t that be awesome.

Ok, so with your writing, which work has made you a proud author?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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TBT – Moonbeam & Roses

Moonbeam & Roses New Cover

Moonbeam & Roses came out in July 2012! So I’m throwing back four years… This book pulled at my heart strings. It includes romance, drama, and healing of the spirit all in one book. As I wrote this book, I wondered how I would take the traumatic injuries that the heroine had.

Here’s a little excerpt to give you an insight into Moonbeam & Roses:

As Wes came up behind her, she suddenly felt different.  Her heart was suddenly fluttering wildly. It had to be the beauty of the night sky and the scent of the honeysuckle vines growing along the fence outside the barn. He put his hand on her shoulder and squeezed it affectionately. “What’s on your mind?  You have been unusually quiet tonight.”  She turned and smiled up at him.  “I guess my mind is on this beautiful night.  The stars are so bright.”  She leaned her head against his chest, thinking how nice it was to be here with him.   She looked up into his dark eyes.  He was devastatingly handsome, with his dark hair and rugged face, not to mention the black Stetson.  He was definitely a cowboy to the bone.

Wes was also studying her face.  She was a beautiful young woman.  Her blonde hair was just past her shoulders.  The moonlight reflected off it like moonbeams.  She had hazel eyes so gentle; a man could drown in their depths.  For the first time he was focusing on her like a man for a woman, not just a friend. He looked deep into her eyes.  Slowly he lowered his mouth to hers and gently kissed her lips, careful not to linger for fear of losing control.  When he lifted his head, she was smiling.  “That was nice, but what did I do to deserve that?”

He laughed and hugged her close. “That was for being my friend and listening to my problems.  I need to talk to you.  Let’s walk down to the house, I need a drink.” He took her hand and they walked to his house.  What was up with him?  Serious was not one of his common emotions.  When they were settled on his couch with waters in hand, he turned to face her. 

“I have some news.”  He paused to take a drink before he continued. “I received a call last night regarding a job in Montana.  It is a great opportunity for me.  I will be training horses for a large ranch.  They will supply me with a house and stables for my horses.”  He watched for any emotion on her part. “Sara, I told them I would take the job.  I will leave in two days.” 

For those of you that read my current work, my writing style has changed some, but the feelings behind the words are the same. If you haven’t read this one, then check it out. It’s available on most ebook and paperback sites.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Don’t forget about the fun giveaway I’m running…It’s in my posts…

 


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Time Flies…

Good morning! I know I’ve been AWOL for several days. With tax season coming to a head and book deadlines, I’ve been covered up. Sometimes I wonder where my brain is when I make my writing schedule. I should’ve thought about the lack of writing time I have in the last six weeks of tax season, but I didn’t.

Can you believe the first week of April is almost in the books? Time is flying by so quick this year. Lily has already been released and coming up soon on the A Light Upon My Heart release on April 30th. I’m now working on The First Mate’s Lady, the continuation of Safe in the Pirate’s Arms. It seems like just yesterday, I was setting up the release schedules and now I’m deep into them.

So, how is everyone on this beautiful day? For those that were so awesome to share my cover reveal for A Light Upon My Heart, I’ll be announcing the winner in the morning. So be watching and if you haven’t had a chance to share, you have less than 24 hours to get in the hat for the drawing. Thanks again for all the support!

Now back to my busy schedule, already in progress…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…