Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Creating a new series…

wishful harbor design

The birth of a new series is always fun and exciting, but scary all at the same time. Will it hold together for the number of books planned? Will the characters stay interesting or just lose interest?

With Wishful Harbor, I’ve thought of this for a while, a long while. I’ve had this series in my mind, but it wasn’t until I sat down and started mapping it out that I realized that it could work. And when I say mapped it out, I truly mean I drew a map of the town of Wishful Harbor. I placed each place that would take part in the series and put it in the front of the series notebook for reference.

There will be five books, each one can stand alone or work together. I’ve written a synopsis for each book, even named the main characters.

But, will it hold the test of five books?

The way that I’ve assured this is that each book can stand alone. That’s how I know it will hold together. Each story has its own world held within the little town of Wishful Harbor. Although there will be repeat characters, and there will be repeat locations, the main story and characters will lead the story. That’s what makes it work in this instance.

Keep looking out for the cover reveal for the first book in the series, ‘Breakwater Lane’. I’ll be doing a huge reveal blog and have some exciting things to give away. There will be a more definite date soon, but let’s just say, it’s coming soon…

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-timeĀ 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 šŸ˜‰ ). 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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Five Oaks Ranch…

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Good Wednesday morning folk! I do hope all is well with you and yours. As for me, it’s the beginning of my busy season. Since I’m an accountant, and tax season is now up and running, well, that means I’m a busy lady. Not to mention I have a couple of book deadlines looming too…

Today I want to talk about my Five Oaks Ranch Series. Even though Ridge has been out for coming up on three years, it’s stayed in the top 100 Free books for almost a year. The rest of the series is doing well too…

A little back story into this series… When this series came to me, we were driving back from our Florida vacation. I’d been playing with ideas for a cowboy series, and I wanted it to be based around a family, but I didn’t have the exact specifics. As we drove into Georgia, I was sitting there, lost in thought when street signs started coming into my view. At once, I knew it would be based in Georgia. Then the names started flashing by, my mind whirling with ideas. At that moment, Five Oaks Ranch was born.

By the time we arrived home about one and a half hours later, I had the book names, the cover ideas and had started my character sketches. Of course, I can’t write and ride because I’d turn green, but I had my notepad beside me. I wrote on it without looking, as the words streamed in, almost at once.

When we arrived home, I had to unpack, but my mind was still on beginning Ridge. I have to say, Ridge’s popularity has surprised me. The outpouring of support for this book and the series has been humbling, to say the least. This series came straight from my heart and from the responses I’ve received by email and direct message, it’s touched others.

My writing style has changed a lot since I published Ridge. I’ve studied writing a lot, as most writers do. Some of the things I’ve learned have spilled out into my writing. The first book, Ridge and the second book, Oakley are different in the style of writing, but itĀ still has my heart in it.

To say I’m excited about where the Five Oaks Ranch will go in the future is an understatement. I’ve received emails from readers that would love to see it on the big screen as one big movie or mini-series. Now wouldn’t that be awesome.

Ok, so with your writing, which work has made you a proud author?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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Romance… Enough said…

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Good Wednesday morning everyone! I’ve been a little out of pocket lately, but with several deadlines looming, I’ve had my head to the grind. Hope I haven’t missed too much…

Romance, such a simple word, but such a powerful word. We all need it in our lives. Maybe it’s through marriage, dating, or reading, we need that little spark that makes us smile. But how do you find it?

I’ve had people tell me, after they hear I’m a romance author, that romance is an empty hole that you fall into, hoping for something that’s just plain out a myth. Yep, I want to slap them. Romance isn’t mythical, the unicorn is, but not romance.

As a romance author, I delve into the many aspects of romance. It amazes me to see the depth of romance in our world. If you sit on a bench and watch people, which I love to do, you’ll see it in the smallest of movements or gestures. It’s there folks, you just have to look for it. So, pick up a romance novel and read about it. I know, it’s fiction, but guess what, it’s a real thing.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

myBook.to/HighlandersHeart

 

 


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Stories filling my head…Yikes!

Good Wednesday morning! It’s halfway to the weekend, so relax a little. You’ve got this.

As a writer, sometimes the stories fill my head and I can’t get them out fast enough. Some days it’s hard to focus on one story without the other stories trying to edge their way in. That’s my problem at the moment. I have so many stories running through my head that sometimes I think my head might explode.

The picture I have of my brain is a little hamster running on her wheel. Yep, that’s my brain for sure. So, how do I prioritize12551866924_826fc1afef this craziness filling my head, I outline. I have so many stories pushing for first place in line, but only one or two can hold that spot at a time. To help with the breaking in line syndrome, I sit down and outline the fussiest, pushiest stories. At least that puts them at ease, for a time, but soon they are pushy again.

Now, don’t get me wrong, this is not a problem exactly. As a writer, this is a good problem to have, you just have to learn how to keep your stories in line, which is the hard part.

So, how do you wrangle the stories running rampant through your brain?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Foggy morning in Georgia…

It’s Monday… That’s enough to say about that! LOL! Monday is Monday, plain and simple.

Tuscany is coming in 12 days… The dream that was born in 2015 is finally becoming a reality. When I sat down to type the first word of this book, it was with a happy and excited heart. This story had pulled at me for years, but nothing fell together, until that morning that I woke with the story fully in my head.

This story fell into place like a well-known puzzle, one that had been put together several times and could be completed with little effort. It was like I was filled with the story from Tuscany. As I researched Tuscany, I could see the scenes playing out in the pictures of the beautiful places that I saw.

But now, that story gets to told over and over as readers eyes scanned the words and fall in love with Tuscany as I did. Each reader will fall in love with Romeo and Lana. They’ll fall in love with Olive Hill and want to go there. With each word they read, I hope they’ll see the love that fills every one of them. Love’s Legacy…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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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 itĀ looksĀ 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…