Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Midweek Writing Tip…

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It’s already Wednesday, but the weekend seems so far away. I’m snatching a few minutes out of my morning to write and blog.

Speaking of snatching minutes to write… Today’s writing tip goes along those lines. It’s important to a writer to have time each day to write. It could be just a few minutes or if you’re lucky, maybe a couple of hours. Either way, try to sit down and write everyday if you can.

Why do you need to write everyday? Well, for me it helps my sanity. The characters running around in my head go crazy when I don’t at least get in a couple of minutes. But maybe it’s to meet a deadline, or just to keep up with your commitment to yourself.

So, if it’s early in the morning before anyone else gets up… If it’s at lunch… Or maybe you’re a night writer. Grab some writing time and keep up to good work.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Murder in a romance novel…

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Ok, so who am I murdering? That’s a secret… No, I’m not murdering anyone for real, just in my manuscript. But you may be say, ‘you write romance’. Yes, I do, but I’ve expanded into the suspense, mystery romance side of things. So, murder is on the menu.

But, how do you solve a murder mystery while still having elements of romance? Well, that’s not as easy as it sounds. The trick is to know how to multi-task. You’ve got to keep your investigation going in the foreground while having some romance going on in the background. In a lot of suspense, mystery romances, the romance side is filled in between the mystery conversation. The characters can have romantic dinners, share some eye contact that lingers, and stolen kisses while investigating.

So, yes, you can have romance and solve a murder mystery all at the same time. Just make sure that you don’t do romance overkill. In a suspense, mystery type romance, most readers want more of the mystery suspense than the romance. Or at least that’s what most readers have told me.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Write what you love… Not what’s expected!

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Good morning! I’ve been swamped with taxes and office work, so I’ve been a little absent lately. But don’t worry, there is still writing going on in the background. Safe is almost complete and I’m so excited to bring it to you soon. Now, on to the post.

There are so many trends out there right now that it makes my head spin. So many authors fall into the trend hole and can’t seem to climb back out. Yes, it’s alright to write following those trends, but not if it puts your writing style in a cramp. Sometimes current trends are not what you excel at and that’s alright. Be yourself, not what others expect.

Every writer has their own voice. And we have a passion for different things. Me, I love writing clean romance that inspires others. And now I’ve added mystery and suspense to that love. But for so long I wouldn’t add that element for fear that it wouldn’t be accepted in my genre. I was mistaken and now that I’m almost done with the first novel in that genre, I know that I made the right choice. It’s unexpected, but wonderful. I’ve never felt more excitement over writing as I do at this moment. I feel that this is a huge step for my career.

Now, you need to sit back and figure it out. What do you love to write about? If it’s a couple falling in love over a lost puppy, then write about it. What’s important is writing about what you’re passionate about. Just focus on that.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Plotting through the hard spots…

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Good morning! It’s been a little while since I’ve posted, but tax season is kicking my backside. With all of the new tax law changes and programs having to catch up, well, it’s cost me a lot of writing time. And you know what that does to me.

But, on to this post. Plotting… Yes, it’s something I love to do. And there are so many ways to do it. Either on paper, on a computer program or in your head, which I don’t suggest this last one because sometimes our memory doesn’t serve us well.

Plotting to me is like building a structure. You’ve got to make sure to get the base right, or the rest of the structure will fall. Novels need structure in order to come alive. Why do I say that? Because with structure, you don’t just babble on and can easily lose the reader.

As I’ve said before, a novel needs a beginning, a middle and an ending. And in each section you need to start with a rise in action, then reach the climax, but come back down into the next section without losing your reader. Stay focused on the story, don’t add a lot of fluff that will make your reader lose interest.

This is where plotting helps me. I write down the scenes and then I make sure there is enough to the scene to make it work. It needs to be able to stand on it’s own and shine. If the scene falls flat, then the story will too.

So, try plotting and see where it goes. Not everyone is a plotter. Some are pantser’s which is fine. Just make sure your writing flows.

I’ll post a plot outline in my next post.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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When writing…

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Good Thursday morning! You may be wondering about the title. Here’s the scoop, there are many things that come with the phrase, ‘When writing’.

When writing, always keep in mind that it’s your writing, not anyone else’s. Why do I say this? I say this to help you understand that it doesn’t matter what others think, you know what’s in your head. Write what’s there. Don’t let other’s put words in your writing.

When writing, make sure to pace yourself. If you try to do too much at one time, you’ll risk losing the thought process. Pace yourself and get it right the first time. Don’t overthink it.

When writing, enjoy the process. If you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, then it will show in your work.

When writing… Just write… Enjoy it…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Monday Morning Outlining…

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Happy first day of March! Can you believe we’re already into March? But, in other news, my new series, In Harm’s Way is coming along smoothly.

This weekend the first book, Safe, took a new turn, which means I’m adjusting my outline. You may be asking, why even outline if the story is changing anyway. Well, the original outline got me going in the right direction. And I’ve always said that the outline can change. That’s the fun of writing, sometimes your characters take over.

I was able to get in almost 5000 words this weekend, which was an accomplishment considering I working in my accounting office most of the day Saturday. But the story is filling my head with so many possibilities. Although I know how it will end, I’ve been thinking about the middle and last part of the story. As I was writing this weekend, I ended a scene and something else came to mind. I decided, or rather my characters decided to take another turn. Now the story is going in another direction. It’s the same story, just a little deep into the back story that will pull it all together in the end.

As with any outline, things can change. It doesn’t have to written in stone. And never, ever stick to the outline like glue if something isn’t going well. It’s best to make changes than to keep going in a direction that doesn’t make the story pop. Your story deserves the extra effort to make it flow as it should.

With this series I’m working extra hard on going the extra mile. Although I always work hard to make my work go as it should, this one is pulling something in me. I’m excited in a way I haven’t been in a while. And on top of that, I haven’t put it on preorder, so I’ve got the time to make it the best it can be.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Toss a stone… Watch the ripple…

As I sit here, sipping my coffee and getting my mind ready for the day, I’ve been thinking about my current WIP. It’s been such a refreshing new project that I’ve enjoyed working on.

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Now, I could have stayed with my usual genre and kept the water smooth and ripple free. But, that wouldn’t be fun. I’ve been writing romance for several years. My genre ranged from sweet romance, to paranormal. So, how is my current WIP different?

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My current WIP is a Christian Suspense Romance. What is that you may be asking? Well, it’s a clean romance that has Christian elements, along with suspenseful and thrilling parts, but as always that some romance sprinkled in. And with it being Christian, you know that it won’t be too over the top gory or crude.

So, I went from keeping the waters calm and smooth, to tossing a pebble and wrecking the calm waters. And it’s the best move I’ve made in a long time. I can’t wait to get it out to my readers because I think they’ll fall in love with the characters and be glued to the story. It won’t be anything you expect either.

Ripple the water… Make a change… Get a refreshing new look at romance…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Midweek Writing & Descriptions…

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This week is flying by. So much to do with so little time.

Lately I’ve been focusing more and more on being descriptive. I want my readers to take the journey with me, not just read it. It means more if they see the vision that I do when I’m writing. As I wrote earlier, show, don’t tell. It’s important to keep the readers interest and if they’re just reading words, it won’t. They’ll lose their train of thought. But, if you open up the world to them, then you’ll have fans for life.

For instance, in my current WIP, when Hadley is walking up the sidewalk, I get into the weather, the scenery around her and the neighbor that always stops her, keeping her from the tasks at hand. Also her little cottage on the sleepy street in the small town. I go into detail so that the reader has a sense of where she lives and during certain parts of the story, how close she is to possible danger.

So see, you have to be descriptive. Let your reader into your head. It can only make it better for them.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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The scene that makes you cry…

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Good morning! It’s a soggy, cool morning here in Georgia. Sending prayers for all of those affected by the ice storm. Please stay safe!

Now, have you written a scene that makes you cry? I’ve written so many scenes that brought tears to my eyes. And I’ve had readers that said some scenes in my books made them cry. It’s always a compliment when a reader says I made them cry. There’s a difference in the writer crying and the reader doing the same thing. What? How?

This is my opinion on this matter. If I cry, it could be where I’ve been so dedicated to the WIP that I’m overwhelmed with emotion. Or If I’m killing off a character that I love, my heart is broken. But when a reader cries, that means that I did what I was supposed to do. I wrote with feeling and the reader understood it.

So, write that emotion with everything you have!

There’s a scene in Faith Through the Tears that makes me cry like a baby. I’m talking big, fat tears. One reader even mentions to have a tissue box ready.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Writing scenes ahead…

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Good morning from icy Georgia! It’s below freezing and the precipitation falling isn’t rain… Time for the bulky sweaters that collect dust, but I keep them for just this sort of day…

Now, on to the post. Have you ever wrote a scene ahead of time? I keep a notebook beside my laptop for just this thing. And I label them as what they are. About 90% of the time I know in my head how the book ends and if I’m working on the first half and hit a snag, I’ll write the ending. It inspires me to push through the fog that clouds my thoughts sometimes.

But, will those scenes change and evolve as the writing prior to them does. Certainly, but it keeps you focused on the upcoming events. I’ve written several pages of scenes, then totally deleted some of them as the characters went in another direction. But it’s exciting to step ahead and see the future.

Did I say I could see the future? Yes, in my writing I can. So don’t ask me to read tea leaves or anything like that. I can’t see that kind of future. So, start looking ahead in your WIP and see what can be. It will help with the current part of the process.

As always, good writing and <ay God Bless You…