Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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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…


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What’s up with Safe…

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Good Friday morning! I’m getting so excited about my current work in progress, Safe. It’s taking me on a journey that I never thought I’d take in my writing. This book is a new adventure and I’m ready for it.

So, you may be wondering what’s up, well… I’m learning how much adrenaline comes in when you’re writing suspenseful mystery. One scene had me so tensed up that every sound in the house made me jump. It’s amazing. I’m so pumped up when I finish writing scenes that I have a hard time stopping to go to work.

I can’t wait to get finished with it so that I can get it out to all of you. The two main characters are such polar opposites, but yet they seem to be drawn to one another. The fun part is, they don’t even realize it. Drew is such a protective soul and Hadley is an introvert with a dislike for the outside world. Together they are explosive. The dark place that both of them are in comes from two very different sources, but together they seem to get darker. They have to fight to keep the darkness from over shadowing the light at the end of the tunnel. And the mystery that surrounds them in this spine tingling romance will have you guessing until the end.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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A little Thursday Throwback…

As writers, sometimes we forget about our back titles. Well, we don’t exactly forget about them, but sometimes we push them aside for our newer titles. I was cleaning out some files and was thrown back to when I first started publishing my work in 2012. It was an amazing time as well as stressful. But those older titles are what got me to this point. They are not as polished as my newer books, but they are where I started.

So, with that being said, I want to throw it back to my first published book. It was reworked several years ago, but it still holds a place in my heart. Also, it came from a story that I started way back when I was a teenager.

Let me reintroduce you to Ghost Lover.

The dying words of Jess’s mother are for her to find the love of her life. But with an overbearing father, will she have that chance? When he gives her a horse and riding lessons for her 21st birthday, her life changes. Is the cowboy behind the Black Stetson her soul mate? When her father’s partner decides to stake claim on her, who will win the fight? Suspense, tragedy, romance and a stranger in the shadows lead to a dramatic final showdown in Ghost Lover…

And then there’s the letter!

There have been a couple of covers for this one. Let’s go from first to current…

I love the newest cover. If you’re interested in falling in love with their story, then drop by amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Ghost-Lover-Revised-Stephanie-Hurt-ebook/dp/B00NDI5AYW

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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The story that dies slowly…

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I have several books that started out really good, but then the story lost something. Sometimes when we’re working on a manuscript it loses something and maybe even we lose the story for a moment. Usually I can sit it down for a little while and pick it back up later.

Although some stories do come back in slowly, others just don’t make the cut. I went through my files this weekend and eliminated some stories that started out as a ‘great idea’, but when I tried to create the bones of the story, it flopped. It was like ripping off a Band-Aid, I did it quick and took a deep breath. Maybe one day those ideas will flow back in.

In order for a story to live and become something worth publishing, it has to be strong enough to flesh out. If you can’t even create the bone structure of the story, then how will it ever get to the final stages. After all these years of writing, I’ve learned not to dwell of the things that just don’t work. If it’s starting slow, then put it to the side, work on something else, then come back to it. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…