Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Cloudy Morning Writing…

Good Tuesday morning! It’s one of those, ‘I want to stay in bed longer’ kind of mornings, but alas, I had to get up and fix breakfast then lunch for my son before school. Now, two cups of coffee later, my eyes are still heavy. Menopause, I blame that for my lack of sleep.

Now, the good side of not sleeping and lying awake; story ideas! As I lay there in the middle of night, refusing to get up and read, I worked on part of my pirate romance that was stumping me. In my mind, I had it figured out. The funny thing is, when I did drift off to sleep, well, I dreamed about pirates. That’s not a bad thing, I like pirates.

So, this morning as I start back on the manuscript, I’ll put the newly thought out part into words. I’m so loving my new pirate romance. It’s pulling me into the story. But of course, all of my books pull me in and envelope me. That’s how I keep my head in the work.

With the cloudy, dreary morning, I struggle with my sleepy eyes, but hopefully, the third cup of coffee will do the job. Especially since I have to get my act together and get to the office in a couple of hours!

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


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Start to Publish…

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Good Tuesday morning! I hope all is well with you. As for here in Georgia, it may be Spring, but someone forgot to tell the weather. It’s chilly again…

As for my writing, things are going well. I have several manuscripts in various stages of production. You might ask, what stages are you talking about? Well, here’s a simple guideline that I follow as I bring a manuscript full circle into publication.

1: Of course, first things first, the idea. Sometimes the idea for a book can happen months before I even start the first page of the manuscript, but when the idea comes, I put it down on paper, if not I’ll lose the excitement of that moment. I have a small notebook that holds my story ideas, some have come to be and others have incorporated themselves into other stories.

2. As you know from previous posts, I do an outline. It’s basic, but it leads me through the story, the bones, so to speak. I’ve told you before, most stories come to me in whole, or large lumps of information. The quicker I get that outlined, the quicker the story can come alive.

3. Now it’s time to schedule it into my calendar. Right now, I’m scheduled through the end of the year with stories flowing over into 2017. This way I know in the back of my head what I need to finish on this manuscript in the future, like blurbs, covers and such.

4. Once it’s time to start the manuscript, I sit down with my outline and notes from thoughts I’ve had along the line. Even as I work on other books, things pop up in my mind that would work with other works. That’s when I pull out the outline from my portfolio and jot down the thought for future reference. That way I don’t lose the moment.

5. It’s time to write. This is when I get in the structure and bones of the story, fleshing out the outline points and filling in the characters as I go. This is also when Scrivener is my best friend. All of the characters are lined up down the left of my screen, reminding me of names and people involved. This part of the writing is fast and unedited, very unedited. It’s the write by the seat of my pants, knowing I’ll go back later to correct.

6. Ok, so I have my rough, rough, rough draft ready, now it’s time to go back and fix the many errors, misspelled words, horrible grammar and left off punctuation that leads my editor to want to plot my murder. Now it’s ready to go to her for the red pen, this is the scary part!

7. As I wait for the edited manuscript to come back, I’ll work on covers, blurbs, advertising and setting up the pre-order for the book that’s being worked over.

8. Now the manuscript is back, needing some work and ready to be corrected. I input the changes, make additions and get it formatted. I add the front and back matter, then scan back through to make sure I’ve checked everything. Oh, and just for giggles, I go back through, doing a spellcheck. I’m human, I forget stuff.

9. Wow, it’s now ready for publication! This is the moment an author sweats profusely, hoping you haven’t left off anything major, forgotten to correct something and hope upon hope that your readers love the book you’ve poured your heart into.

This is why most people that say, ‘I could write a book and publish it, it’s too easy’, they don’t ever publish a book. A book doesn’t just appear when you have the thought, it’s a process, one that needs to be taken seriously. So many authors don’t take it seriously and when they hit send, it’s missing something or hasn’t been thought through. Take it seriously, it’s your reputation as a writer.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

P. S. Don’t forget Lily comes out the 27th. Get your preorder now…

Lily Release ad!


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Brain faster than fingers

As a writer when an idea comes through your brain you either have to write it down or put in your computer almost immediately. I’ve learned as I get older, my memory can’t hold for very long. Sometimes I have to stop what I’m doing and write the thought down on anything available. My editor just loves my notes. Napkins work really well 🙂 That’s clean napkins!

Sometimes the way my brain works my fingers can’t keep up. I’ll be typing as fast as my fingers will let me, but my brain is ahead of me. That’s when it gets crazy. I get frustrated because my brain is spitting the story out like a battalion leader, but my fingers are still at start. 

One day I got so frustrated that I actually sat down with a pen and paper and wrote the story. My editor just looked at me and laughed. When I didn’t say anything she was like you didn’t really hand write this did you? I smiled and said at least it got out of my head. She usually just shakes her head and starts typing. Sometimes I think she wants to throw things at me. 

Is your brain faster than your fingers? 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Herds of Lightning Bugs

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You may think I’m joking but as I type this post I feel surrounded by blinking lights. I love lightning bugs. They remind me of being a small child and running around catching them in a mason jar and sleeping with them beside the bed. I remember catching one at a time. But this year they seem to have multiplied. Everywhere you look they’re are hundreds blinking. 

It’s a nice, sultry night in Georgia. The rain has subsided and made way for clear skies. I’m enjoying sitting on my patio working on my current book as my hubby listens to guitar riffs on youtube via his phone. 

It always inspires me to write when I sit outside in the twilight and watch the sun sink into the horizon. I feel like the sinking sun sometimes. As I work on the finishing touches of my latest work I wonder how I got this far. Well, for one I took a huge leap and jumped.

My mind is sort of like the lightning bugs. I keep coming up with new ideas for books and they just keep blinking in my head. I guess that’s a good problem for a writer. 

Let yourself just drift into a story and watch what happens. I even came up with an idea about a children’s book just watching the lightning bugs. Funny how the ideas just pop into your head.

Hope everyone had a great Father’s Day. It would have been nicer if my Dad would have been here, but I know he’s up in Heaven smiling down on me tonight. Don’t forget to thank your Father above for all you are and have. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…