Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Writing in layers, like our lives…

As I sit and ponder writing, life and the many things we do, I see the layers of it all. Layers are all around us. We have the family layer, life layer, work layer, faith layer and so many more layers it’s crazy. As writers we have even more layers than most.

Some days my layers overlap and I have to push them apart so that I don’t get overloaded. Some layers are heavier than others but in the end they’re what makes us who we are. My writer layers come in multiples, sometimes when my writer layers overlap I get knocked to the wayside. That’s when my mind can’t stay on one story and the characters start running over one another.

Do my layers of life and writing run into one another? Yes they do. I’ve seen many days when I struggled with the writing layers, but that’s what makes a writer work harder. As the characters run around trying to get heard, I wrangle them into the stories that flow out of my fingers. The layers of a story unfold and then a new layer starts. Oh the life of a writer’s mind.

How many layers do you have? If you peel them back carefully can you find your true self. As for me, when I peeled back my writer layer I found myself. I hadn’t realized that I needed that layer peeled back. For many years I left that layer piled under so many life layers and once I revealed it I started a fresh start. My writer layer has brought me into a new world of wonder and other worlds.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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Memories…What do you do with them?

It’s Friday and the weekend is almost upon us. Are you planning a big writing weekend? Me, I’m planning a working weekend which hopefully includes some writing as it’s supposed to be a rainy weekend here.

Now to the post at hand. We all have memories, but what do we do with them. Some dwell on them and let them take over their lives. Not healthy. Some give them wings and let them   fly away. Sometimes that’s a good thing when they’re memories that need to be forgotten. But most keep the good memories held in a special place to visit from time to time.

I use memories in my writing a lot. Sometimes life is the best inspiration for a writer. It can give your story depth and realism. The best way to keep a good memory alive is to immortalize it in fiction. Sometimes a bad memory can be rationalized in fiction too. If that bad memory haunts you at night, put it in fiction and leave it there for the rest of the world to see.

As for me I’ve incorporated many memories, good and bad, into my writing. Some of the most emotional parts of my books are pulled from memories. Putting them into my writing has helped in lots of ways to cope with those memories and to learn to put them into perspective.

We all have times of haunted dreams and secret smiles, but we also have the chance to put them where they need to be, in the past. Move forward and make new memories. Living in the past is normally not a healthy thing. Living in the past hinders moving forward and reaching goals. Put them in fiction and move ahead…

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


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Have I gotten too comfortable with my life?

Do you ever sit back and look at your life? I’ve been doing that a lot lately. I know that my life is way too busy most of the time. I’m a wife, mother, accountant, children’s minister, and now a published author. Sometimes I don’t have time to think straight, well that’s if I could think straight 🙂

Last night was Valentine’s and here is a rundown of my night. I worked in my office which is beside my home, until 5:30. I finally walked across the driveway to the house and gave my hubby his card and chocolate covered caramels. I gave my son a reese heart and box of m & m’s, plus a card. Then I made bacon, egg and cheese toasted sandwiches. I know really fancy for Valentines dinner, but it was scrumptious. Then I grabbed my laptop and worked on tax returns while we watched Duck Dynasty. (Our new favorite show.)

I know this sounds really unromantic, but it was actually nice. We sat as a family together, even though I was working, our son was on youtube, and my hubby was playing with his new I-phone. To me this is a great night. 

But when I turned my laptop off and gathered all the paperwork back into the carry box, I thought about my life. I realized something that I’ve known for a while, I’m set in my ways. I’m happy just sitting home instead of going out to dinner with friends. I don’t care to go out, going to the store has gotten to be a chore. I work, I write, and I do my ministry, but I don’t do much of anything else. My husband says he feels the same way. Have we lost touch with the world. I don’t know if we’re just in a rut or what.

I’ve been struggling with a decision, which I won’t say what just yet, don’t want to jinx it. I’m feeling somewhat lead to make a change in my business that will surprise some people and some will say it’s about time. If I do this it will open up a lot of opportunities to further my writing.

So, as my friends, pray, cross fingers and I promise I’ll let you in on the secret really soon. I’m waiting a little bit longer to make the decision. I’ve discussed this with my husband and my assistant. They’re both very supportive. I’ve also let a couple of personal friends in on it for their input. I really think it will be a positive step in my life. So in the coming weeks I will let you in on some of the changes to come. 

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

 


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If you feel old does that make you old?

I’ve always heard people say you’re only as old as you feel. Well that can hold true in a lot of instances. Sometimes I marvel at the energy I have and other times I’m sitting there thinking where did it all go 🙂 

I sit over a computer for a good part of the day doing accounting, then I sit in a chair with a laptop in my lap at night writing. It takes a toll on your neck, shoulders, and back. Don’t get me wrong, it’s definitely worth it. My husband tells me constantly to put the laptop down at night and rest, but when the story is running around in your head, you’ve just got to get it out there.

I’m only 44 and to me that’s still young. To my son it’s old and I remember being the same way when I was a kid. I thought when you hit 50 that was it. You were a goner. Funny how age seems different as you near that mark. To me now 80 or 100 is getting older. 

Do you think we grow better with age? Well, I definitely do. I know I’ve learned to enjoy life. When I was younger I just lived by the seat of my pants and never stopped to enjoy anything. Now I do stop and smell the proverbial rose from time to time. To me my writing is a time to stop and enjoy the moment. 

My mom is always saying that I need to write less and rest more. Not happening. I enjoy writing. It’s a way to express myself. Sometimes I get my daily frustrations out in my writing.  It’s crazy how calming it is to sit in front of my laptop and just pour my heart out until I’m emotionally exhausted. 

Don’t give up on life. Live it and enjoy every moment. Life is too short to just go through it with blinders on. Watching life from the rear view mirror is not healthy. Live for today not yesterday. That day is done and today is here and now. You can’t take back yesterday, but you can make today and tomorrow better. Give it a try. It’s my new philosophy in life. I put the past in my writing and leave it there for everyone else to live.

As always, good writing and May God bless you.


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It’s Monday and I turn 44 today!

Yeah I know, most women don’t reveal their age, but I’m just happy to have another birthday every year. It’s crazy that I’m over 40. Me! I don’t feel 44. Most people say I don’t act 44 either. Well, last week while I had sickness, I felt over 40, but now after all the antibiotics and steroids I’m back to feeling young again.

Age to me is a frame of mind. If you constantly act your age, you will end up feeling your age. I try to enjoy every aspect of life. I try not to let everything get to me. My friends are constantly saying how do you stay so calm all the time. Well, letting things drag me down and keep me in depression doesn’t accomplish anything but developing an ulcer. Don’t get me wrong, I have regrets in my life. I have those moments of what if… I put a lot of those what if’s in my writing and go on with my life.

So, if you are in the dumps because you’re over 40, well get up off the ground you have threw yourself on and dust yourself off. Start living life to the fullest. You’re not promised tomorrow and the Good Lord gave you this time to live as He would have you live. Enjoy your family, play with your kids, decorate a tree, hug a friend, kiss your lover, tell someone you love them and live, by goodness live. Start today, right now. It will change your life.

That’s why I finally decided to publish my books and continue writing. It gives me immense pleasure. I get to live the life of my characters and enjoy what they enjoy. If only for a moment.

 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You!