Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Writer’s Block… It happens!

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Good morning! Yes, I said it. If you plan on being a writer, at some time or the other you will have writer’s block. And the worst part is, it normally comes when you are on a deadline or a wordcount needs to be met. It’s never during a convenient time.

But, what can you do when it threatens to sideline your work? Well, I tend to sit back, take a breath and focus on something else. If I’m stuck at a particular place in my manuscript, then I skip ahead. Sometimes that works to get the creative juices flowing.

Other times I go back and read over what I’ve written. It can make the story come alive again. Or even I will go to the next story I’ll be working on and at least work on the outline.

To me, Writer’s block is like when your mind freezes up. So, you have to jolt it back to reality. That’s why I keep doing something with my writing. Whether it’s a step ahead, a step back or a step in a different direction, I make it count.

That’s why I love having a detailed outline to go by. When I get stuck, I have it as a reminder of where the story is headed. And if I need to go ahead to another chapter or place in the book, I can without getting lost in the details. Then once the block has passed, I can get back to where I left off.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Deadlines and caffeine…

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At this time of year I’m burning the candle at both ends. It’s something accountants prepare all year for. We know that for at least four months everything will be turned upside down and deadlines will be looming everywhere. But it’s why I love it so much.

Maybe that’s why I love a writing deadline. It’s the adrenaline. And it’s the excuse to drink more coffee, not that I needed one.


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Deadlines or Procrastination!

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Deadlines… A writers nemesis, but necessary. As an Accountant I have many deadlines to meet, and as a writer, I also have them. They surround me and some days I feel overwhelmed. But I love what I do on both fronts, so I push toward the next deadline with zeal.

But, procrastination also plays a part. As I’m procrastinating now by writing this blog. Sometimes I work best with a looming deadline. Then other times, a chill runs up my spine as the anxiety fills me.

As writers, we set release dates for our work, then work toward them. It’s like a means to an end. If we don’t set a deadline, then where will our work go? I do a schedule every year that sets deadlines for the draft, the editing, and the release. This is setup by evaluating the work itself. Is it to be a full length novel or a short novella? I calculate the words per day, but I manage to add some empty days that allow for procrastination, but still have me meeting my deadline.

What about you? How do you handle deadlines?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You!


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Making time work for you…

Good Tuesday morning! Time… It just keeps marching on and sometimes it marches all over your good intentions. Yep, been there! But, I’ve started doing a couple of things that work for me. SO, here goes:

  1. As I said in Saturday’s post, schedule your advertising ahead of time. That gives you a good slot of time to write. Without having to do your ads every day, then you can focus on other things, like writing…
  2. Set a time to write every day. For me, I try to write every morning before I get dressed and head to the office. That’s my time to write. Sometimes I even set a timer to make sure I get every second of writing time without having to glance at the clock.
  3. Don’t go down the social media rabbit hole. I’ve gone down that hole so many times and lost precious writing time. Go ahead and write before you go on social media, then you don’t have that temptation.
  4. And don’t forget the time gem – the weekend! When I schedule my daily word count, I always put in double on Saturday and Sunday.
  5. Now, my most important way to make time work for me is to do a schedule. I know what I need to get done everyday. If I meet my word goal for the day early, then I can either get in extra words or I can do a little promotional posting. But a schedule helps you keep up with your upcoming releases and you’ll never miss a deadline again…

Don’t forget that the way to meet your deadline is to focus on your writing time. Make sure that you have figured out how much you need to do each day to meet your goal. Make the time work for you…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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Monday Writing Tips

Now, on to today’s writing tip. You know when you have a story in your head, but you have a deadline looming on another story. Yeah, that’s a problem for a writer. But I have a solution, one that helps me out.

Good morning! I do hope everyone had a great weekend. For me, it was awesome.

When a new story idea comes into my brain, I have to get some of the idea down on paper or it will interrupt my other work. So, this is my tip. Give yourself at thirty minutes to write it down or put down an outline. Once you’ve given the new story a voice, it will help you to get back to the previous piece of work. Trust me, it helps.

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


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Life…As a Writer

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Good morning! Hope everyone had a great, productive weekend. Let’s make the best of the week ahead.

Life as a writer is sometimes crazy. There are stories running through our heads at every turn. Some days it’s hard to do my day job because a character is knocking on my brain, wanting out. But, when I finally sit down to let the character out, they are stubbornly sitting there with arms crossed refusing to come out.

Then, when you get a couple of days to do some serious writing, everything else has to be done. I try to do social media posts and write on weekday mornings. Of course, I need to train myself to wait on the social media posts until after I’ve written my designated word count for the day. Social media is like a leech, it sucks the time out of the morning.

What’s fun is when you have a great story come into your mind, but you’re in the grocery store… LOL! That’s why I have notes on my phone. Usually, I’ll stop where I am and at least get the basics down, if not, I’ll forget them until a much later time.

Oh, and then you have a deadline, but also a list of things to be completed. That’s when you get creative with your time. Even eating breakfast while typing. Ok, so my laptop has crumbs in the keyboard, but it still works.

So, how do you juggle things?

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


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Romance… Enough said…

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Good Wednesday morning everyone! I’ve been a little out of pocket lately, but with several deadlines looming, I’ve had my head to the grind. Hope I haven’t missed too much…

Romance, such a simple word, but such a powerful word. We all need it in our lives. Maybe it’s through marriage, dating, or reading, we need that little spark that makes us smile. But how do you find it?

I’ve had people tell me, after they hear I’m a romance author, that romance is an empty hole that you fall into, hoping for something that’s just plain out a myth. Yep, I want to slap them. Romance isn’t mythical, the unicorn is, but not romance.

As a romance author, I delve into the many aspects of romance. It amazes me to see the depth of romance in our world. If you sit on a bench and watch people, which I love to do, you’ll see it in the smallest of movements or gestures. It’s there folks, you just have to look for it. So, pick up a romance novel and read about it. I know, it’s fiction, but guess what, it’s a real thing.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

myBook.to/HighlandersHeart

 

 


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Deadlines keep you focused…

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Deadlines are all around us! We have deadlines for tax filing, bill paying, publishing our manuscripts, getting to work, the list goes on. Some days the deadlines seemed to crowd in and boggle our brains, but to put it in perspective, deadlines keep us on track!

As with my work, I’m an accountant which means I’m on a constant deadline. There’s payroll taxes due, sales tax due, income tax filing, and many more items that make your head spin. Maybe that’s why a lot of accountants are introverts, we don’t have time to be anything else!

With writing, you have deadlines for publishing, completed book covers, blurbs, contests, dare I go on. I heard that groan from the masses, yep, you know where I’m coming from. But the deadlines keep us focused. So, maybe we don’t keep up with our word counts and end up putting twenty thousand words in two days, but we get it done 😉

SO, do deadlines help you or make you crazy?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

By the way, I met my deadline for the finished manuscript for Lily with 24 hours left over. That made me give myself a high five.

Lily Release ad!

 

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Monday morning writer’s block!

Good morning everyone! It’s Monday, but it seems like it was Monday just yesterday. Time flies by sometimes faster than you want it to. I’m working on many deadlines; tax returns are due out April 15th and ‘Oakley’ is supposed to release April 15th.

Of course deadline number one is affecting deadline number two… Since it’s tax season and I’m an Accountant I’ve been working really long hours. That of course affects my writing in strange ways. Some days I get back home from the office and can’t write fast enough, but other days like the last couple of days I can’t seem to muster up the energy to put words to paper. This makes me crazy especially when I sit down with laptop ready and nothing… not even a word. There’s on thing I’ve learned as a writer, don’t write when you’re not into it. You usually end up deleting it totally…

Hopefully now that I’m making headway with the huge pile of tax returns on my desk I’ll get back to writing. I made a huge dent in them yesterday. I work best on the weekend when my phone isn’t ringing off the hook. I can turn on the tunes and work without much interruption.

Hope all is well with you and yours.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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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…