Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Finding your writing niche…

Good Tuesday morning! Hope all is well in your corner of the big world. Have you ever thought about changing up your writing style or even the genre you write in? Many authors do this with a lot of success, some not so much. Let’s talk about the in’s and out’s of changing things up.

To get things started let’s say you’re a romance writer. Well, the romance genre is a widespread market going from the sweet innocent romance to the hardcore erotic style. Some writers just have the knack to write certain types of romance and when they try to go up the pole or even down they don’t seem to excel. But maybe you’re not doing well in the category you write in, what next? Try something new? Maybe…

I’ve talked to several authors that have tried many writing niches. Many authors go from romance to mystery without missing a beat, but others struggle with the change. One author changed her romance writing niche. She normally writes paranormal romance which is racy and at times dark, but then she tried a romantic comedy. It was a hit. But of course she’s known for her paranormal romances, what does she do? Well, she dabbles with both now. I’ve read both by her and have to say they’re great. It was a great transition.

Another author friend tried to step out of writing mysteries to try writing romance. Let’s just say she struggled. She told me that writing mysteries just coming easily, but trying to write a romance novel gave her a headache. I suggested just writing a mystery which is what she does best and sprinkle in some romance. Well, she’s doing that and it seems to work.

As for me, I’ve been writing romance for a long time. I’ve tried Christian Romance, Time Travel Romance, Cowboy Romance, and several others, but they’re all in the romance genre. But, I just published my first children’s Christmas book and I have to say it was fun. Now I’m working on a children’s series and it’s challenging. By no means am I leaving romance writing, I’m just venturing out a little.

So, what’s your writing niche and could you change if you tried?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Strange Things That Writers Do…

Ok, admit it, writers are a different breed. We think different from other people. Our thought processes are strung out amongst several things and stories. It’s amazing how many things a writer has going on in their head. We’re constantly thinking of the story in the works or the story not yet written.

Here are some of the strange things writers do:

1: Sleep with a pad and pencil beside the bed. You wake in the middle of the night with a story or character idea and you just have to get it on paper.

2: Google strange topics. When you’re writing there’s always that one topic that you’re not that familiar with and you have to google it. Let’s just say some of the things you google could get you watched by the powers that be. Think about some of the things you’ve googled lately. Yeah, those are the one’s. 

3: Someone tells you something that happened to them and you suddenly start taking notes. 

4: You’re watching the evening news and get a sudden urge to start a new story. Yep the top story just inspired you to write.

5: You have notes written on anything that you can find. I’ve used napkins, envelopes, corners of newspapers, whatever is available.

6: Stare off into space. Yep, the story is taking over your brain and you get lost in the thought.

7: A story unfolds in your brain as you sleep, you wake up and struggle to go back to sleep to see how the story ends.

8: You talk about your characters as if they’re real people. To a writer they are real.

That’s only eight, send me more. The list could go on forever. Writers are different and we’re alright with this.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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The Writing Process Blog Tour

The Writing Process Blog Tour

This blog tour is where writers and authors answer questions about their writing process and I was honored to be a part of this cross promotion. My friend and fellow author Ana Calin posted hers last week. You can check out her writing process here: http://anaatcalin.com/2013/11/11/the-writing-process-blog-tour/

On with the questions…

 

What am I working on?

I am currently working on a couple of things. The one closest to the finish line is “Open The Heart – A Alpine Christmas Romance” and it should be out before Thanksgiving. This is a book close to my heart as it hits on one of the items on my bucket list – going to Switzerland. It’s a heartwarming story of love that is unexpected. Also I’m working on a sort of time travel romance “Finding The Right Time”. I hope to have it out before Christmas.

I’m working on several other manuscripts that are still in the works, but very exciting time.

 

How does my work differ from others of its genre? 

I feel like my writing is different because of the style. I write from the heart and of course most authors do. My romances are clean, yet passionate, but your teenager would be safe reading these. I try to make the characters real, not something that comes out of a box. I want my readers to relate to them on a natural level. They have everyday problems and solve them in everyday ways.


Why do I write what I do?
I write romance because I’m a passionate person. I’ve been reading romance novels since I was 13 and fell in love with them. I love to help my readers feel like it’s possible for them to be happy, or even find happiness in the relationship they’re in. Maybe my writing will carry them away for a moment or two. I also want them to realize that you don’t have to be rich, or a beauty queen to have romance. A lot of writers only write about billionaires and people that are superficial, but I try to write about real life people.

 

How does your writing process work?
My writing process is quite simple. A lot of my ideas come to me as I lay awake at night, but also when I’m people watching. I love to sit and just watch people. After the inspiration hits I immediately sit down and outline the story out from start to finish while it’s still hot in my mind. Then I expand each line of the outline into a chapter or two. Sometimes as I write I change up my lines, but the story stays on the same course as the original inspiration.

 

Hope everyone has a great Monday.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Formal writing, What’s your style?

I’ve been told that some of my books are written a little too formally. I usually laugh because I’m a very southern speaking girl. For those that are not familiar with the Southern speech, usually I have clients that are not from here that call just to hear me speak. I laugh and tell them to get a life. So when someone says I write formally I have to laugh.

As for my writing, I don’t feel like it’s that formal. Sometimes I use ‘I could not’ instead of ‘I couldn’t’ but when I look back at it, that’s the only way it sounds right. I hear a lot of writers that send their work to editors and when it comes back certain parts no longer sound right. Well not right in the sense of the feel it originally had. You have certain ways you speak that gets points across and the wording is crucial. When you change even one word whether formal or not it changes the feel.

In my first couple of books I was so careful to use good English, but as I published more books I leaned more toward the down to earth style. When I relaxed a little, the reviews went from ‘written a tad formal’ to actually talking about the book.

So what’s your style? Do you watch your couldn’t and shouldn’t or do you just write from the seat of your pants and throw the English book out the door? I think that’s when you get through to the reader. You can even throw in some ‘yeah’s’ and ‘ain’t’. I know ain’t is not a word, but in the south it’s part of our vocabulary 🙂

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…