Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Researching Romance

As a writer of romance it’s not always easy to just put your thoughts in the computer and be done with it. Even a run of the mill romance needs a little research. Have you done your research?

With my newest book “Victoria” I had to do a lot of research. I printed 3 different Civil War Timelines. Each one had a little different description that went along with the timing of the story line. It’s amazing how a reader can pick up on even the smallest misstep in regards to history. I made sure the time and date was correct with aspects concerning the war itself. 

A fellow author friend wrote a medical romance. She laughed telling me she felt like she was studying for the medical exams. Before she started the book, she wrote down her outline and got in touch with a doctor friend. She then told him what the book had in it medical wise and he gave her several books that would help make the medical part look real. 

Another author was writing a thriller/murder mystery. She had to study several serial killer cases with the local police. They were more than happy to help her with the research. As she has a weak stomach she said a lot of the reading was hard to get through, but she made sure she did it on an empty stomach.

I’ve even researched romance itself. There’s a lot on it if you look around. It helps when you are coming up with story lines. You don’t want to write about what everybody is writing about. If everything coming out is about cowboys, well, maybe put cowboys but give it a different spin. Make your writing stand out.

So the next time you pick up a romance novel, think about the hard work the author went through to get it where it is. Especially when you look at the price. So many people want them for free or nearly free. That’s nice but the author put their heart, soul and hard work into that book you’re holding. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Stalker! My own personal nightmare…

In my post this morning I was talking about the levels of love. I mentioned obsessive love and touched on my experience with a stalker. I decided it might be helpful to others out there if I told my story. Maybe it will give them the courage to stand up and fight.

It started when I was 16. I met a really nice guy at the local skating rink. Well I thought he was nice. Looks and actions can be very deceiving. Since I went every Friday night we developed a friendship, nothing more or so I thought. He never touched me during those days, only conversation. I enjoyed talking to him. We had a lot in common.

One night I was talking about a Youth party our Church was having. I asked him if he would like to go. I had started to like him and thought it would be alright. He jumped on the chance. Well, he came and had everybody just falling all over themselves to be near him. I have to say he was a very nice looking young man. My parents even liked him. They had met him several times at the skating rink. He asked me that night for an official date. Being I had not been on many dates (I had real over protective parents-not complaining), I told him that sounded great.

We went out for a nice dinner and a movie. At the movie we held hands, but nothing really tipped me off that he was not mentally alright. He gave me a quick kiss goodnight and left after our date. Well, being a 16 year old girl I thought this was great. An older man (he was 19-which seemed older to me at the time) was paying me some attention. We started talking on the phone every night the next week. It was on the fifth night that something seemed different. I had mentioned a friend that was a guy had laughed at a joke I told him. This guy went off the deep end. He started swearing and raising his voice. Well, I told him I was hanging up and that started my nightmare.

He started calling all hours of the day and night. He would rant and rave, then it started getting sexual. He started detailing what he was going to do to me when he got his hands on me. I would hang up and he would call back. He even told my dad the same things. He would tell me what I was wearing when I would go into town. He even a couple of times told me what I wore to school. I was terrified.

My dad called the police and they put a tap on our phone. When the investigator heard this guys conversation, he was mortified. He had my principal at school watching out and I couldn’t go out without an adult. One night we were having a Christmas party and he called repeatedly. He talked awful to anyone who mistakenly answered. I got to the breaking point. I lost weight, I stopped eating. I was scared. He was watching me at a distance, but nobody could catch him.

One day I got home from school and collapsed. Both from exhaustion and complete misery. The investigator ramped up the case. They finally were able to catch him in the act. He was living with his older brother and they played the tapes for him. He called and begged us not to press charges that his brother had a mental disorder. We knew it would be the only way he got help, so we pressed charges. The judge would not allow me in the court room because the guy had implied he would get me there too. My dad went.

The guy was sentenced to two years in prison with mental therapy. He served 18 months and go out for good behavior. Well, guess who was the first person he called. Me! It started again. Well, the investigator was ready and he was put back in prison for 6 more months. After some therapy of my own, I was able to move on with my life.

I’ve not heard back from him. Thank goodness. I want anyone that has had this happen or is having it happen, please get help. People like this are sick and capable of anything.