Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Saturday…Second Cup!

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Good Saturday morning! I hope all of you are doing something fun and exciting today. I’m starting my morning off by writing. It’s one of my favorite ways to start Saturday morning.

As I’ve been telling you this week, my work in process is a Highlander romance, actually the first book in a trilogy. It’s been coming along pretty well so far, but I’m at a pivotal point where I need to do a little more thinking. I want to make it more, how do I say this, more intriguing. So, I’m going to do some plotting today. It needs to go in the right direction so that when the 2nd book starts, it goes well.

I’ll start by doing a story board on Scrivener, putting points in, then flesh them out. Sometimes plotting can be fun, but other times it’s no so much. For me, if I’m not working on the work in process, then I feel empty, but this time, I’m excited about plotting. Those little plot bunnies are filling my head.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Excitement in the air!

 

Contract signing

When I walked into my office yesterday morning, it seemed like any normal Wednesday morning, but it turned out to be an extraordinary day. Let me give you a little background on the reason it was spectacular. I’ve been publishing my work for a little over 4 years and it’s been such a wonderful time, but in the back of my mind, I wondered what it would be like to sign a publishing contract. Today I got the chance to see what it felt like and I have to say it felt wonderful!

I turned in Tuscany on Monday to Solstice Publishing and yesterday I received a sweet note with a contract attached. Let’s just say for a moment I sat there, reading the email about ten times, then pinching myself before I realized that yes, it was real. I screamed, totally alarming the three men outside that were working on my property. Then, of course, I sat back, trying to remember how to breathe.

The picture above was taken as I signed the contract and gave Solstice publishing rights to my manuscript. It was the scariest thing as a self-published author and the most gratifying thing knowing that all the late nights and long hours of tapping at the keys had finally paid off. To say I’m humbled is an understatement. Now, as I sit here in the after glow, I’m totally off the rocker excited about what the future will hold.

So, my advice is to do what I’ve been told over and over by successful authors, keep pushing, keep moving forward and one day, it will happen!

I’ll keep you up to date on the process as it goes. It’s a new, exciting adventure.

 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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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…


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Well, I’m gonna jump!

Have you ever thought about doing something and then you put it to the side for a while? Well, that’s what I’ve been doing regarding entering Harlequins So You Think You Can Write contest. I thought about it last year, but I wanted to wait another year to work on my writing. I just didn’t think what I had ready was good enough. To tell the truth, as a writer, sometimes we’re our worst critics. 

The funny thing is the story I had almost entered into it last year went past round one of Amazon’s Breakthrough Novel Contest which was excited for someone like me that does this as a hobby for the time being. I think I squealed for a week. I was excited ok. 

Well, here we go again. I started this book a couple of months ago and it’s only about 1/3 of the way completed. It was a sudden inspiration but for some reason another story, “Victoria” which officially comes out September 30th, took over. But it nudged it’s way back into my brain in a very pushy way. Stories can do that. If you’re not a writer, you may be saying, that wouldn’t happen, well, it can and does. Those characters can be real bullies and it can get a little scary how well they weave their way into everything you do. You find yourself washing dishes and plotting the next scene, working on depreciation schedules with the characters dancing on the paper, and then you dream about them. If I could record my dreams as they happen this story would be completed.

So, I’m going to jump into this contest with both feet. I had a dedicated fan tell me the other day that I needed to enter some contests. She said I could win, but I had to enter first. It was very humbling to say the least. I told her as we corresponded via email that I didn’t have any piece of work near enough completion, but she quickly informed me that I had time to finish this one. I had mentioned this one in an earlier blog post and she said it had the potential. I tentively sent her a little of the first chapter and she completely blew my email up with the response, “You’ve got to enter this one”. 

I will be hitting yes and confirm today on the contest. I know, that gives me less than a month to finish the story that is complete in my mind already. So wish me luck and go by the website to read my first chapter. Not sure how long it takes to post it but it will be there in the next couple of days. Here’s the link http://www.soyouthinkyoucanwrite.com/.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Do you find excitement in what you do?

It’s a simple question. Do you find excitement in what you do? Whether it’s your job, your writing or more importantly your faith. What excites you?

I try to find excitement in everything I do. If I find excitement, I find happiness and it means I’m enjoying myself. Life should be enjoyed as much as possible.

As a Christian I find so much excitement in my faith. I think that’s one of the reasons I enjoy being a children’s ministry leader so much. I enjoy teaching children about faith and our Savior. I get so excited when they get it and get saved. It’s just awesome and inspiring.

I get very excited being a parent. Every new thing my son does I get smile of pure pleasure. It’s exciting watching him grow up which is happening way too fast… Sometimes I just sit back and smile. I’m so proud of him.

With my job as an accountant I get excited when things go well, when I get that account balanced or when I get a new client.

With my writing it’s a up and down excitement. There’s the new sale, the new book, the new blog friend or just the new idea that takes over your day. 

So get excited today. It makes your day go better when you’re excited about something. If you can’t think of anything to be excited about, then just be excited to be alive.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Excitement and Tears…

I know I’ve already posted my normal daily post, but just had to do this one. It’s a separate post because this one is on my life.

Yesterday was an awesome day at Church. Well, any day at Church can be awesome, you just have to be open to it. But yesterday was above the normal bar. We had a Easter Cantata. For those of you who don’t know what that is, well it’s a music driven play. The Church Praise Band performed several songs and we had video’s to go with them and a speaker in the background. It went really well, and yes I cried. I know you’re not surprised. I’ve always been open to the fact that I cry easily. I’m emotional what can I say and especially when it comes to my Faith.

The second most important thing was two of my wonderful children from the Children’s Ministry were saved last week and they went down front yesterday to make their choice public. Yep, I cried again 🙂 It’s so awesome when children make that most important decision. It makes my job so rewarding. I’m always in awe of how the Lord works in such young lives.

Then since we had rain yesterday, the annual easter egg hunt was held inside in the sanctuary. I was worried about how it would go, but I shouldn’t have been. It went off without a hitch and the children had a blast.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Why publish a paperback?

I had someone laugh at me for publishing my books in paperback. I was astonished. For a few seconds I could not even respond. When did we lose the art of picking up a paperback and turning pages. I still get a thrill out of picking up a book and reading, don’t get me wrong, I still use my Kindle too. But there is something about the smell of a paperback and the feel in your hands. Maybe I’m old fashioned and I won’t apologize for that, but it still holds a special place in my life.

Also, on the point of publishing, it feels really good to hold a book in your hand that has your name on the front. It is like when you are pregnant, the baby is in your stomach and it is obvious that their is a baby there, but when you can actually hold it in your arms it makes it real. Just like with a book. The first time I held one of my books in my hands was surreal. I actually shed a tear or two. It was so different from looking at it on a computer screen or a e-reader.

I can also tell you that Shakespeare feels different when read on the computer. There is something about the classics in book form that just pulls you in and grabs you. SO please do not throw out all of your books. If you have not picked up an actual book lately, try it. You might find out that it still has potential. By the way there are still many people who do not have e-readers, so you have to get your books in their hands too.

Well, I’m off my soapbox until next time. Have a great Friday and as always have a blessed one and good writing! Remember today starts the weekend. (We have Fall Break next week so I’m sleeping in!!!)


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Romance…

Well, here goes the soapbox. I attended a sweet, romantic outdoor wedding Saturday night. It was two good friends that have had a beautiful romance and finally made it official. I have heard some comments lately that have surprised me about how our society views romance.

Several people have made comments that romance is just a part of our imagination. When people say that to me I go red with anger. Why do these people feel that way? Probably they have never had true love hit their heart. I don’t know, but I know that romance is still alive. To me romance can be in a look, a sigh, a touch, a single word, a moment, and so much more. It does not have to be a candlelit dinner or big gesture.

I want to recommend a book to you that is a wonderfully written romance. “The Last Dance” by Wyatt McIntyre. I finished this book last night and I have to say I was pleasantly pleased. If you do decide to read it, please have the tissues ready. Maybe it is just me, but I cried in the first chapter. Just curl up with a cup of hot chocolate or hot tea and enjoy.

So guys and girls, let’s not let romance die. I personally feel like a little romance lives in everyone of us. It is just that people don’t want to let that part of them out. It is a wonderful part of you, so let it out. It will help your relationship immensely. Just give him or her a look across the table that says, “You are special to me” and see how they respond. Let me know how it goes.

As always, have a blessed day and good writing.


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It’s published!

Well, “A Love Never Lost” is up on Smashwords.com and will be on Amazon this evening. Barnes & Noble will have it in about a week or so. I’m so excited and relieved. Yes, I’m over my sadness and replace that feeling with excitement and pure joy. So, if you have a chance check it out. This is my favorite out of all my books published so far and the longest.  Only through God was this book possible. Have a great Friday and good writing! 


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So I am soft hearted! What?

 

Well, last night my son and I were watching “Facing the Giants”. I started to shed a couple of tears (actually a flood). My son started to laugh at me. He said, “Mom, this is not sad, why are you crying?” I turned to him and tried to explain it. “Son, these are happy tears, not sad. I feel really good watching this film.” He just shook his head.

I have always been soft hearted. I shed tears while listening to music, watching TV, reading, and just in life. Nothing gets me more than a beautiful romance that unfolds and sees a happy ending. Weddings almost do me in. LOL!

So as I drink my 2nd cup of coffee this morning, I contemplate the issue of being soft hearted. Sometimes it can be embarrassing, but other times I look at people around me that are not reacting and I want to say, “Really. Don’t you feel anything?” So what’s wrong with a couple of tears while watching a good movie or reading a touching scene in a book. I consider it a compliment to the writer for evoking immense emotion. I could only hope to invoke that kind of emotion in my writing.

I recently was honored to have a fan write to me and tell me one of my books made her cry. She said it was in a good way. It made me feel like I had accomplished something. I had evoked emotion. So is it weird? I don’t think so, just maybe to some, but to the other softies out there, shed a tear and enjoy the moment!