Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Research is fun…

Good morning! I’m enjoying a little research this morning. What, you might ask, am I researching? Well, as a romance writer, reading and watching romance is important to keep my inspiration going.

So, I’ve started a series on Netflix that has been pulling at me for a while. ‘When Calls the Heart’, is my new binge watch. This is a great series to watch if you’re into writing romance as it keeps your creative mind active.

This series is interesting with many elements, romance, history, mystery, and drama. I’m enjoying this research very much.

So, what is your current research?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…heart-love-romance-valentine.jpg

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Friday…3 day weekend!

Labor Day Sale

It’s a soggy Friday here in our part of Georgia. The wind and misty rain have arrived from Hurricane Hermine and it looks like that’s the setting for the day. But we need the rain here in Georgia.

Time has been flying by. It’s hard to believe September is already here. Since it’s a 3 day holiday weekend here in the states, I’m offering a sale on my Five Oaks Ranch books. Since Ridge is already free, I’m putting Oakley, Chase, Luke and Maggie at .99 for the long weekend. So if you haven’t introduced yourself to the Cauthen brood, then jump in for the sale!

In writing news, the last of the edits are done on Tuscany and it’s with the proofreader now. So, the clock is ticking and it won’t be long before the release party. I’m really excited for Tuscany to make it’s grand debut.

As you know, a writer can make a 90-degree turn in their writing. I was working on my current work in progress when the extreme need to start a new series overtook me and I had to hold production on everything to start it. Well, in three days I’ve gotten five chapters into the series. Then I saw that one of the editors with Harlequin is desperately wanting Highlander romances, which is what the series is all about. I sent her a tweet and she said to send it to her when it’s completed, so, we’ll see where that goes. Now, on to watching the Outlander, (wink-wink), it’s research for the new series.

Hope all of you have a great Labor Day Weekend and stay safe! Remember to do something special with your family, make memories and have some ‘me’ time too…

As always, good writing and May God Bless you…


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Research? That’s it…

Good Friday morning! I know I’ve been away from the posts for a lot, but it’s been really busy around here. I’ve finished Maggie, she’s in edits and I’m busy working on the Christmas edition that will end the series…

This morning as I sat here, writing and sipping coffee by the Christmas tree, I watched Breaking Dawn, Part 2. When I’m alone and writing, I love to listen to music or watch a romantic movie, keeping the inspiration flowing. So this morning it was the last Twilight movie. Yes, I cried at the end. You have to admit, the moment Bella sends Edward through the history of their romance and that beautiful song, A Thousand Years plays in the background, it touches you. My fingers were flying over the keys as it inspired the romantic thoughts.

Some say movies are not research, but I call foul. They’re great research. Just watch how the plot plays out, how the couple’s relationship is planned out. It’s the perfect research material and enjoyable at that.

I listen to the dialogue between characters, the way they work with one another and flow. Watch how the intense moments come about and how the writer/director has made it into a nail-biter that pulls you in. Try using it in your story, it will help.

So, do you watch movies to inspire?

As always, great 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


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Mail Order Bride Research…

Well it’s raining and stormy here in Georgia this Monday afternoon. But that’s alright, we need the rain. Since I kind of let the news out slightly in a previous post, yes I’m working on a historical romance along with Chase, the 3rd book in the Five Oak Ranch series.

This book has been interesting to say the least. It’s based in the 1800’s just after the Civil War. The book is about a mail order bride from Georgia that goes to Montana to marry a man she’s never met. I don’t see how they did it. I’ve been researching the subject and it can be quite interesting to say the least.

Back in the 1800’s men went west in search of financial stability and adventure. Some left their wives home in the South and eventually sent for them, but the large bulk of them were single and when they finally settled in one of the western towns, guess what? Yep you guessed it, there were hardly any women. I can imagine these men were a little lonely and wondered if they’d done the right thing as they cooked their meals and washed their clothes.

It didn’t take them long to start sending advertisements to southern newspapers pouring out their hearts. Some would send romantic poems in order to lure in the ladies. It worked! Soon the mail order bride became a popular way for these men to finally have a wife. They’d write back and forth with the lady, then send a ticket for her to come west. Some of these correspondences were between the men and the father of the lady. In this case they don’t get acquainted until she steps off the stage coach in a dusty western town full of men. What a nerve wracking arrival to say the least…

It’s made for fun writing though. I’ve enjoyed delving into the history of the mail order bride as I make my story come alive. I’ll give a little hint soon of the title and then I’ll let you in on the cover. This book will probably come out in late summer. Since I love anything historical, this has been a thrill.

So what have you been up to lately?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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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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Where your writing takes you…

As I start this post I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. Mine was wonderful. Now on to the clean up and take down and enjoying time with my son. My husband says it looks like Christmas threw up in our house. So I like to decorate. What? On to the post…

Where does your writing take you? It can take you to different countries, different lives and let your dreams come true at your fingertips. When you are writing open up your heart and experience it.

As I write I usually try to throw in a fantasy or something I love. That way I get to live the fantasy and make it come true for my characters. I get to do the things I wouldn’t dare do in real life.

Through my characters and lots of research, I get to go to places that I have dreamed of going. It’s so much fun to experience the places through my characters. If you put enough descriptions you can carry your reader off to places beyond their Kindle, Nook or paperback. You can take them to exotic destinations with the sun dancing on the clear blue water or even take them to snow covered chalets with crackling romantic fires.

The sky’s the limit when writing.  Give your reader and yourself an adventure, you both deserve it. So get writing and live your dream through your writing. Go to that place, or do that thing you want to do, live the dream.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You!