Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Inside a Series…

Series Article

Good morning! As you can tell from the picture above, I’m talking about Five Oaks Ranch, my bestselling series.

Have you written a series? If so, did you have a hard time keeping the stories straight? This series was a work in progress that kept me on my toes. The idea for the series came as we drove back from our Florida vacation a couple of years ago. The road signs were passing by and each one seemed to spur an idea. So, by the time I got home, I had a skeleton map drawn on my notepad. Since I get car sick easily, it was a horrible looking thing, but I had it in my head and heart.

Over the next couple of days, I put together the book names, the character sketches for the five main characters and ideas for how their stories would go together. This series was the most fun as they almost wrote themselves. Each book fed off the other and it was as though I wrote one long manuscript and cut it into five books. I know, there were six, but the Christmas book only came into my head toward the end of Luke.

Several people started writing to me that they wanted to know more about the parents. At first, I was like, but this is the story about the five children, hence the series name, Five Oaks Ranch. Then as I sat thinking about it, I came up with the idea for the Christmas story that would bring it all together. So, A Christmas to Remember was born. By the way, at the end of the Christmas book, I’ve put several of my own family recipes that have been passed down through the generations.

The family tree is introduced in the Christmas book. You’ll notice that some of the kids haven’t been born in any of the books, but I wanted to let my readers know that the characters went on to lead love-filled lives together.

So, have you started the Five Oaks Ranch series yet? Ridge is free! This book stayed in the top 100 of free books on Amazon for over a year, which made me giggle with excitement everytime I looked at the stats. And you’ll notice a pretty, shiny silver medallion on the cover of Ridge. He was honored with a five-star review from Reader’s Favorites! Here’s the link to the whole series if you’re in the market for a new series to read, but here’s a warning, you’ll fall in love with the Cauthen’s.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Revisiting an old friend!

Lacey's Choice front cover

I had a dream last night…It was about this manuscript…I now know where it’s headed and can’t stop my fingers from typing. As bad as it sounds, this book should have been finished a couple of years ago, but something snapped inside of me and I couldn’t finish it. I lost the story in my head, but in my dream, it all came back.

If you haven’t read the first book in this series, then grab it first. By the way, it’s  on Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/Open-Heart-Alpine-Christmas-Romance-ebook/dp/B00GW6T6AQ I’ve had so many sweet letters about the first book and so many asking for the second. I’m sorry it took me so long to get it back going, but when you lose the focus, you have to step back, or it will be a complete mistake.

So, Lacey’s Choice will be coming soon!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 

 

 


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Friday Writing…

It’s finally Friday! I hope all of you have a fabulous weekend planned. As for me, it’s tax time, so I’ll be elbow deep in tax returns, but I do plan to put in some much needed, stress relieving writing…

Here’s a little snippet of Promises Made, the historical romance that made the honorable place as my 30th book published…

The music started just as everyone was finishing their food. Hank pulled Joy’s chair out and stood with her as they watched several people move onto the makeshift dance floor.

“Come on papa, let’s have a dance.” Joy said, her eyes lit with excitement. Every year, her and papa always shared the first dance, it was tradition.

“I’ll grab the next one, but Nash here, maybe he’d take you for the first dance.” Hank said, grinning down at his shocked daughter.

Joy stammered, trying to catch her voice. “I’m sure Mr. Collins has better things to do than dance with me.” Joy said, humiliated that her papa had offered her to a stranger.

“I’ll dance with you.” Nash said as he took her hand, leading her toward the floor. His facial expression never changed. It was almost as though he regretted agreeing to this dance.

Joy just knew she’d faint from lack of oxygen. What was happening? Her papa always danced the first dance with her. She looked up at the back of Mr. Collins head as he led her toward the other dancers. Why would he want to dance with her? If she went by his demeanor, he didn’t want to dance at all.

Nash stopped and turned to face Joy. “Ma’am.” He grasped her hand and pulled her into a loose embrace. Nash made sure that there was at least two inches between them so no tongues began to wag. All he needed was more gossip about him. Since his mother had been a full-blooded Cherokee, people in this town thought he was nothing but trouble. His two brothers had it easier since they were born to another mother.

As they moved around the dance floor Nash avoided her eyes. Joy wondered what he was thinking about. He kept his gaze on a spot beyond her right shoulder. Of course, this man was a lot older than her, so he was probably just being nice to her papa. But, Joy’s mind went to the fact that her papa had invited Nash’s family to sit with them during the meal. Her papa had never mentioned the Collins family at home. Maybe he and Nash’s dad had been friends, but why wouldn’t she know about it. Another weird thing was that her father usually sat with his friends, so why suddenly was he interested in the Collins family.

When the song came to an end, a gentleman tapped Nash’s shoulder, asking to step in. Nash let her hand drop as he stepped back, allowing the man to dance with her. Joy watched as he walked to the sidelines and watched them move around the dance floor. It was odd the way his eyes moved with them, almost in a protective stance.

I do hope you enjoyed this short little piece of the moment that Nash and Joy first danced. This was such a special, sweet story and I fell in love with the characters, flaws and all.

Have a great weekend!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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That moment…The perfect ending!

release-ad

Good morning! It’s halfway to the weekend, you can do this!

As I sat this morning, finishing the last minute edits on Promises Made, I read the last paragraph and sighed. Have you ever just really knew when you typed the perfect words to end a book? Well, that’s the moment I had this morning. But, with that being said, I also cried knowing what those last words meant for my characters and also, knowing I can’t say a word yet!!!

Promises Made is taking me to new heights as a writer. It’s different from my other historical romances and has brought me so much excitement for the storyline. I can see all three books in my head and I can’t wait for you to meet Nash and Joy. You will fall in love with them.

Joy is this sweet young woman that believes in romance and love. She’s lost everything, but gained more than she ever expected. Her humble upbringing has made her a strong woman with good morals.

Nash Collins is a rich rancher that was born as a half-breed), his mother was Cheyenne. He is fiercely loyal and needs a wife. The moment they set eyes on one another, Nash knows that she’ll be his one day. But he also knows that it could be impossible until fate turns the tables.

So, be watching for the release that is coming this Friday!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Writer Beware!!!

Good morning! It’s almost the weekend folks, so just be patient, it will come…

We as writers want to sell books, right? But, at what lengths will we go or how much money will we spend in order to sell them? This post is not about advertising or promoting, it’s about the leeches that come around when you publish a book.

Yesterday, I received a call from a publishing company. Of course, at first, your heart pounds and your ears roar for a tiny second… At least mine used to. I’ve received so many calls with fantastic news… “You have caught our eye and we want to give you the moon”. Unfortunately, the moon comes at a steep price. And yes, we all want the moon, right?

I sat and listened to this guy just shower Highlander’s Heart with praises, which alright, yes, that made me feel good. But, you see, I was googling this guys publishing company as he talked. The second through fifth things that came up were about a scam and it was from other authors who had fallen into their trap. So, I went over to their website, the poor guy was still gushing about the millions that I could make if I went with their company… The very first page offered three packages for getting ‘in’ with them. I won’t even post the prices they were so ludicrous.

The poor little guy then went on to tell me that he could put my book on the silver screen immediately. I’m sorry folks, but I had to cover my mouth as the laughter bubbled forth. Anyone in this business knows that it’s not a straight line to the silver screen unless you are lucky enough to catch the eye of a big-time person in the movie business. But, I was nice, I continued to listen.

Then, he said and we’ll put you in touch with our review site to get the reviews to boost the sales of your very first published book. If I hadn’t heard the warning bells earlier in the conversation, this would have been the moment of the bell clanging. You see, I’m about to publish my 30th book, so that told me this little guy’s supposed research of me was completely false.

At this time in our conversation, or shall I say his, because I was pretty much scanning social media at this point, but I was getting a little tired of listening. I decided to end the really badly rehearsed speech he was giving me about the reach I could have with them. I told him to email the information and I’d have my publishing legal team check it out. (Like I have a publishing legal team, but it was fun to say 😉 ). At this point in the conversation, the guy started stuttering and telling me to check out their rating on the better business bureau, which I’d already done in the first five minutes of the conversation. By the way, it was horrible.

So, the moral of this post is, if you get a call from a publishing company, please do your homework. I’ve received calls from some of the bigger names in publishing, but they were wanting money to promote my work. Beware of the leeches and make sure you do your homework before you sign on the dotted line.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Monday morning writing…

It’s the Monday after the Super Bowl and everyone is sluggish and sleepy. Some are grumpy, and some are smiling broadly. I’m not a huge football fan, but since Georgia had a team in it, I watched some of it. Of course, my son and hubby watched the whole thing.

Oh well, on to writing. I’ve been working on ‘Promises Made’, the first book in the Sky Ridge Series. It’s a sweet story of how love comes in when you least expect it and sweeps you off your feet. As the series progresses, there will be trials and tribulations. Things will not always be as they seem.

I love writing historical romance. There are so many aspects of history that can be delved into. The research is fascinating and gives me ideas for more stories, so it’s a win-win!

I hope everyone is having a fabulous Monday…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

promises-made-front-cover