Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Never Give Up Your Dream…

Well, the SYTYCW2013 emails have been sent out and I didn’t receive one. I’m not sad or mad or upset, just gives me more drive. There was 640 really good entries and the editors had to choose only 50 to go on to the next step. I don’t envy their job. But you never know, my work was read by an editor at Harlequin.

I had a really nice message from a fellow author that’s published with Harlequin and she gave support and her experience. She entered last year and she too did not get picked. Well guess what, she still heard from one of the editors and now has published a couple of books through Harlequin. They told her that all though for the contest they can only pick 50 that doesn’t mean that they don’t look seriously at the others. 

So, I still have hope. Anyone that knows me wil know that I’m resilient. Writing is a dream passion of mine and it’s been such a crazy year and a half. I’ve been featured in two magazines and several blogs. Also this week I’ve been honored with being featured as the Must Read of the week in the Southern Writers Magazine blog. Here’s the link: http://southernwritersmagazine.blogspot.com/. Scroll down and I’m on the right. Then when I was on a Children’s Ministry website getting a game for last night I noticed a Barnes and Noble advertisement. I had three of my books featured in the ad along with some other great reads. Needless to say I did a happy dance. So I’m still on a high right now.

As we move on from the drama of the contest wait, there’s always some writing contest going on and our name is out there. Let’s focus on what we as writers do best, let’s write. You never know when that call might come in saying, “We want you to write for us.” 

Good writing and May God Bless You…

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How to draw out a story

Have you ever been writing a story and suddenly you’re at the end and only have a couple thousand words. You sit there going, “It seemed longer in my brain.” Well, it could be. This is when you open it back up and you read over it. Look at the descriptions. Have you given the read enough to imagine the place or the real character?

A lot of times we get the story down and forget that the reader can’t see it in their mind. We as writers have got to show the reader the story around the story. Meaning, if the story takes place in a small town and that’s significant, then let the reader know about this small town. Give it life.

If the character has a flaw, bring it out in descriptions, the reader won’t know unless you let them know. Remember this story that you can see clearly has to be brought out vividly to the reader. They can’t jump into your brain and see what you see. I had to learn this. My first couple of books needed more descriptions and one day they’ll get them.

So give your character a life, home and description, not only a name. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Still waiting on SYTYCW2013 decisions to be made. Keep fingers crossed and good luck to all entered 🙂

 


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When stories fill your head…

It’s crazy how a writer’s brain works. Of course I’m working on a deadline that’s looming pretty quickly. As my vacation helped knock some of that out, I still need to finish the manuscript. The funny thing is another story is filling my brain.

I was watching a movie Saturday and suddenly I was inspired. No, I’m not going to write about the story that I was watching or copy what that show was about. It was someone in the movie, or rather the job that they held. As I watched the romance unfold on television, the story was unfolding in my brain. 

What made it even worse, I had my laptop in my lap working on my manuscript with a deadline. My hands were just laying on the keyboard as I daydreamed about the story going through my head. So in the next couple of weeks I will fill you in on the story, but for now I’ll get back to the work at hand. Oh, and waiting to hear if I made it to the next level of the SYTYCW2013 Harlequin writing contest.

Hope you’re all having a productive Monday…

So, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Good Morning! I’m Back and Raring to Write…

As I told you Friday I took a short social media vacation. I’m actually on a real vacation from my accounting job, but not my writing. I spent the last three days at my mom’s lake house with my hubby and son. It was so relaxing to get up and bring my coffee to the front deck. I sat every morning and watched the sun rise above the trees.

We had reservations at Mexico Beach for the weekend, but the threat of Tropical Storm Karen cancelled that. It would have been nice to go to the beach, but we still enjoyed our restful weekend. The boys were able to fish and I did manage quite a bit of writing. I was able to get in a little over 5000 words. That was a great thing. We arrived back home yesterday. Now I’m just lounging around in my pjs catching up on my sites. I did cheat a little this weekend. I was able to get a weak signal but not strong enough to do too much. 

Friday Avon Romance sent me a special message. I was crowned with the Star Member Badge. For the month of October I’ll be listed as a Top Contributor on their front page. That was so special. As a writer and blogger I’m humbled to receive this award. Especially from Avon Romance which is one of my favs. 

Now, today is the last day to enter the SYTYCW 2013 Contest with Harlequin. Since I entered the work in progress “Finding The Right Time” over a week ago I’m starting to sweat with anticipation. I’m so excited about this one. Some writers have blogged that someone called them even though they didn’t advance. Wouldn’t that be the coolest thing… I’ll keep you updated.

Well, it’s time to get back to work. No, not accounting… Not this week. I’m doing my fun work which is writing. I’m so pumped. Not to mention it’s so gorgeous here in the south. Of course I love Fall so that makes it even better.

As always good writing and May God Bless You…


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Weekend on my mind…

At 4pm today I start my vacation. I’ve been so excited. Had planned a trip to Florida, but anyone that’s been watching the weather reports know why this has been cancelled. It’s going to be a writing vacation and a social media vacation. 

I’ve entered my newest work in the So You Think You Can Write contest on Harlequin’s site. I’m really excited about this contest. The fun thing is the manuscript is not completely finished. Yikes, this means I’ve got to spend a lot of time finishing it up. I have it completed in my head, but unfortunately I can’t print directly from my brain. So, I’m taking a social media vacation to keep down distractions. I’m not going to check my sites or post on them for a couple of days, but I’ll be back up and running at full speed next week.

Do you have weekend plans? For me I’m planning a restful, writing excursion. Not sure where it might take me, but my laptop will be attached to my fingers. If you get a chance go over to this link: http://www.soyouthinkyoucanwrite.com/manuscripts-sytycw-2013/finding-the-right-time/ and read my first chapter submission. If you feel inspired write a comment and forward it on Facebook and Twitter. 

Hope everyone has a great weekend and I’ll be back on here when I come out on the other side of this writing frenzy. I just hope I can stay away from my social media sites and book sites. 

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Contests, New Releases, and just WOW…

Well, as promised in my blog last week, I jump. I entered the So You Think You Can Write Contest at Harlequin. This has been a year long process of do I want to or not struggles. Suddenly two weeks ago I started feeling the tug and coincidentally I saw a post that entries were being accepted. That was the sign I needed to jump. Here’s the link: http://www.soyouthinkyoucanwrite.com/manuscripts-sytycw-2013/finding-the-right-time/ So go over and read my submission and let me know what you think. I’m really excited about this entry. 

Image“Victoria” was officially released today. That’s an exciting thing also. I tried out the preorder with Smashwords.com, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and Apple iTunes. We will see how that goes because as you know those sales won’t show up for a little while. It you get a chance go over and check out this book. It’s also available on Amazon, CreateSpace and Allromanceebooks.com.

As with everything I do, I stay busy. Late last week “With All My Heart” was released in audio form. That was exciting, but what was really exciting was Apple iTunes picked it up immediately upon release. You may be saying, well iTunes is affiliated with Audible. The exciting thing is my other audio book that is out has not been picked up yet by iTunes, so this makes me wonder at the picking process. 

I had another author ask my opinion of audio books and my opinion is they’re great. My sales have been good and I’m excited about the rest of the books that are in production even as we speak. 

As Rosie Amber and I wind down our Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour, I sit to ponder the results. We were able to meet 30 talented authors in 30 days. As bloggers and readers alike we were able to see a small part of their lives and books for a moment. It went really well. If you haven’t check them out, just go through my last 30 days posts and you can see my side and the link to Rosie’s side.

So as I leave you today, think about the day. It’s Monday, a new week to make a better you. God made you in His image and that means do your best at everything you do.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…