Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Writing Courses…

Ok, I know we’re busy writing the next big one, but have you considered taking a writing course. For the last six or more months, I’ve been taking a couple here and there. It’s been really enlightening. Actually, a couple of them made me rethink a couple of my works in progress to the point I rewrote several scenes.

What kind of courses, you ask? Well, I’ve taken one on Facebook advertising which was very helpful. Maybe you’re thinking, well that is too easy to need a course on, but no my friend, there’s a whole world of ways you can do your ad. I was amazed at the things I didn’t do with some of my former ads.

Then, of course, the marketing courses I listened to. I’ve been going about my marketing in the wrong direction. Who knew? Not me! Lately, I’ve been using some of the concepts I learned, like tags on my books, rewriting my blurbs, how I send out tweets and what I send out. Incredibly I’m seeing a positive upturn.

Then comes  the writing courses. These will make you sit up and think. I’ve learned so many ways to make my individual voice stand out. It’s amazing what you can learn about not using adverbs and how best to use commas. Yep, guilty as charged. Some of the writing techniques I learned from bestselling authors has made my daily writing so much more productive.

So, have you tried a writing course lately? All of the one’s I’ve sat through online were free and by bestselling authors. As with many things today, some of them only give you an introduction, then want money for the more advanced courses. I’ve used what I learned from the introductions and put them to good use.

As always Great Writing and May God Bless You!


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Writer Courses: yes or no?

It’s Monday people! Why is Monday such a horrible day most weeks? Shouldn’t we be rested up from the weekend? I don’t know about you, but Monday’s always seem to pull at me. For some reason Monday’s make me tired, and I have four more work days to go!

Well, on to the reason for today’s post. Have you taken a writer’s course lately? Over the weekend I took a writer’s course and I have to say it was quite enjoyable. I learned more than I expected and it wasn’t even boring. Sometimes we try to go in the other direction when it’s time to learn something new, but guess what, it’s time to try new things. The course was a series of videos that taught about writing, of course!

My suggestion to you is this, go for it! If you’re bored out of your mind and don’t seem to be learning anything, then move on, but if you start listening intently and learn something, then your time hasn’t been wasted. If I get permission to let you in on the free course that I took, I’ll definitely post the link here. Let’s just say I plan on using what I learned and hopefully if anything, I can pass on the results here.

So, get on with your Monday, and remember at least you made it to Monday!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Learning from others…

Good Monday morning! It’s drizzling rain here in Georgia, but that’s alright, we need it. Also since it’s Monday it kind of meets with my mood.

Today I want to talk about how you train as a writer. Some people say, ‘it’s easy to write, anyone can do it’, but that’s not the case. Writing takes more than you think to get from start to finish. You can sit down and write an idea for what you want, but it takes more than just an idea to get the full story. I’ve had ideas before and thought they’d be good, but they didn’t have enough filler to actually make a book.

I like to study what my favorite authors do. You may be asking what I mean, well it’s quite simple. I read lots of books in the genre I write. As I read, I’m looking at the sentence structure, paragraph lengths, the setup of the characterizations and the way the book is brought to the end. It’s amazing what you can learn from doing something you love, reading.

Then of course I read posts from other authors, writing magazines and even study courses. So, do you still think it’s all that easy? I’ve learned more English in the last three years that I’ve been publishing, not just writing. English skills are very important when you’re writing. Hey, I was thinking backwards for a while, but once you get into the business you realize, it’s more than just words on paper.

Several authors I follow have businesses that help other authors. All authors should want to help each other. It’s amazing the things you can learn from other authors about their own mistakes and how to correct them. I also join many Facebook writing groups, which just by reading them daily I can learn so much. Try it, you won’t regret it.

So, do you learn from other authors? If you’re struggling with something in your writing, there’s always someone out there or an article that can help you out.

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


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Researching the craft…

Good Wednesday morning! It’s beautiful this morning here in Georgia. The sun’s streaming through the window and the birds are chirping happily, but according to the news we have weather headed our way for the afternoon, but this morning I’ll enjoys the beauty in front of me.

Well on to today’s topic, Research. No matter what genre you write, a little research is needed. For me I read constantly and watch a lot of romance on television. It’s a must when you’re a writer. I try to keep up with what’s new and happening in the romance field.

As for watching romance on television, all it takes is a spark and off to the writing I go. My favorite station is Hallmark. The romantic movies give me inspiration and also an idea of ways to make a story flow. Remember, all of these were written by someone. Some of their movies are actually based on romance novels, which is exciting. Especially if I’ve read the novel, then I sit and compare it.

Of course I’m a avid reader, constantly plowing through the thousands of books to get to the one that just pops out at me. Sometimes it’s the cover that pulls me, or maybe the title. A cover can sell a book quicker than the blurb, really, it’s happened with me. I’ll see a cover that just pulls me in and that’s it. Of course I’ve been disappointed, but even a badly written novel can offer research ability. I make notes of what turns me off about the book. Maybe it’s wording or just the scene placement. But reading is a fun way to research about your genre.

Another way is to scan Amazon. Yes, I said scan it. Type in the genre or sub genre you’re currently working on, then see what’s selling. Look at the covers, the blurbs and the reviews, which are important. This will keep you current with the pull of the readers.

Don’t forget that if you’re writing about something specific like say rodeo, you’ll need to check out some reading on the subject. I’ve learned a lot about the rodeo since I’ve been writing Chase. As I get to a certain spot where I need a rodeo technical term, it’s off to Google. It’s amazing what you can learn. The other day I got caught up in a article and it actually inspired a whole scene that I’d not planned. Remember, I’m a outline person, but that outline can change 😉

So, do you research your genre? If not, I suggest doing a little checking. It’s amazing how much fuller your writing can be when you delve into the subject at hand. You might be pleasantly surprised.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

P.S. Oakley is now available! http://www.amazon.com/Oakley-Five-Oaks-Ranch-Book-ebook/dp/B00YLNDNOM