Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Finding time to write…

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Good morning! Do you struggle to find time to write? I know that I do. Some days are harder than others. Especially during tax season. But, it’s important to find that time.

But how? Sometimes we have to just become more organized with our time. If you do better writing in the morning, but you have to be at work at 9, just get up a little earlier. You could even make sure that everything for your morning routine is ready the night before. Go ahead and set your clothes out. That gives you an extra few minutes the next morning.

If you want to reach a certain word count when you sit down to write, then time yourself. If you can write 1000 words in thirty minutes and you want to get in at least 1500 words everyday, then you need to set aside forty five minutes to write. Now that you have an idea of the time you need, then schedule your morning to make time to write.

One thing that helps me is having an outline. I try to get in one chapter a day or more if time allows. Since I use Scrivener, when I finish a chapter, I stamp the section of the outline as done. This gives me a feeling of accomplishment. And I don’t know about you, but when I get to write in the mornings it just makes my day go much better.

So, get yourself a schedule and make it happen…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

P.S. Safe comes out on May 12th, so preorder now to have it ready for you to dive into on Wednesday!


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Monday Thoughts & Coffee By the Fire…

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Good Monday morning! I hope that you’re staying warm wherever you are this morning. It’s cold in Georgia and looks to be a dreary day with cold, icy rain. Burrrrr…. I’m sitting by the fireplace, wrapped in my fuzzy blanket, sipping coffee and writing.

So, here’s my Monday thought as I drink my coffee and get my eyes open. What length of book do you like to read or write? Do you love a long, 50K or more book, or a quick read of less than 25K?

Here are my thoughts on the length of a book that I read or write for that matter. I’ve heard from fans that say they love the longer ones, then others love the shorter ones that I write. It’s hard to know what will be the best length based on fans wants.

Now, if I’m picking up a book to read, it’s entirely up to my mood. If I’m kicking back and have the luxury of a whole afternoon to sit by the fire and read, then I’ll choose a longer book, but if it’s just a quick moment of sitting in a bubble bath, then sometimes I prefer a shorter book. Especially if I’m stressed or had a particularly hard day, then I need that quick, mindless read, meaning I need to see the story from start to finish in one sitting and have that heartwarming feeling of a Happily Ever After.

For my writing, it’s a toss up. Some of my series or books are setup to be quick reads. I make them short for a reason. A couple of my series have been wrote in short form just for those fans that write to me all the time wanting what they call, lunch time reads. But I do have long novels in my list. My new series that will start rolling out in March will be long books, each one.

So, long or short read… long or short writing… We all love to read and write, so keep it up and let’s get lost in another world or time at least for a moment or maybe for a whole day. Who am I kidding? We readers tend to read into the night sometimes… There’s nothing wrong with pulling an all nighter!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Setting attainable goals…

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Good Monday morning! Goals… We set them all the time, but do we meet them? A lot of time goals are just something we set and it just makes us focus on getting close. But in writing, we need to meet those goals and make them a reality. Why? Follow me on this one.

Ok, so a word count goal can be changed or not met, unless you are going for a submission guideline that you have to meet or exceed. That’s a flexible goal if there is no guideline to meet.

But, it’s important to meet the deadline that you set for releasing your book. Especially if it’s set up for a preorder on any book site. If you don’t meet that goal, then you could lose some permissions through those sites. Not to mention how readers see you as a writer.

So, how do we set attainable goals? You’ll need a couple of things before you can do this:

1. Calendar – On the computer, printed out, or hand drawn. It’s not important what kind of calendar you have. I like to get a planner with large boxes for the days of the month, along with the separated days for making notes.

2. Pencil – I only use a pencil in my planner so if changes come, I can make them without making it look cluttered with mark throughs.

Once you have the two above items, then sit down and focus on the next set of goals:

  1. Word Count – This is an important thing, even though it can vary. But if you’re setting up a release date that has to be solid, you need to know what you can do in the time between starting and releasing. Is it a novella or novel?
  2. Daily Word Count – If you can easily write 1000 words a day, then go to the calendar and count out 50 days for a 50,000 word book. Be sure to give yourself some wiggle room for days that you can’t write as much. But remember, it’s possible that you’ll have it done way ahead of time, but also, things happen, so prepare ahead.
  3. Release Date – Now that you know a basic word count, plus a tentative date to finish the writing part, then set a release date. If you are writing a 50,000 word book, don’t set it for next week. Open the calendar and begin searching for a date that will give you enough time to write, edit, and release.

Now that you have your goals set, start writing and have fun. If you’ve given yourself plenty of time, then all should go well. And remember, this is what you love to do, so don’t let that word count make you tense. You’ve got this!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Stay up to date on all of my upcoming releases here, and:

website: www.stephaniehurtauthor.com

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/stephanie-payne-hurt


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Sunday Ramblings…

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Good afternoon! Are you enjoying your Sunday afternoon? Me, I love Sunday afternoons. After Church and a light lunch, I always take a short nap. It’s just what I love to do. Then, of course, I do what I call, power writing…

Power writing? That’s what I call the writing I do when I try to get as many words into the manuscript as possible. Usually on the weekend is when I do my best power writing. It’s quiet and there’s no deadline for the day, just writing time. So, I power write.

I’ve changed up my writing this year. With the current manuscript, I’m upping the word count. Normally, I’m known for the mid 30’s in word count, but this one, well, it’s going to the mid 60’s. If you’re a writer, and you’re used to writing a certain length, when you change that up, it changes the game. I feel as though I’ve gone into another realm. It’s exciting.

So, get a nap, take a walk, and write.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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Lost in the words…

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Good morning! The week is half over. I realized that I haven’t put a post on here in several days. But my head had been in my current manuscript.

So, with that thought, have you ever got lost in the words? I’ve been busy catching up on my word count. For about a week I didn’t write much and my word count suffered. If you’ve read many of my blogs you know that’s important to me. I have a set word count on the calendar and if I miss a couple of days, well, I go into a frenzy to get caught back up. But when you miss more than a couple of days, it’s almost impossible to get back on track. Notice I said almost impossible.

The characters have been running around in my head, forcing their way out. So, Sunday afternoon I sat down and let the characters take over. Let’s just say, I almost caught back up to where I should be. Hopefully this morning I will get back to task and be on track.

As a serious writer, you have to stay focused. Unfortunately, life slips in and things come up that interrupt that focus. When that happens, I sit back, look at my deadline, then divide it out by the days left. That gives me a new goal that has to be met. Which usually means a higher word count per day until I’m finished.

And as you know, I always have a couple of manuscripts in the works at all times, so get back to where I should be, I’ve put all of them aside to get back on track. The funny thing about doing that, the characters of the other manuscripts scream loudly in my head. Does that make me certifiably insane? No, that just makes me a writer!

Hope everyone is well and staying on track.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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As the fog clears

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This is the view from my front porch this morning. The temperatures have finally warmed up and the threat of rain looms, but you can’t tell by the gorgeous sunrise. The fog is starting to clear and is barely visible in this photo. I feel inspired as the vibrant colors stream through the front windows.

As most of you know from reading my posts I try to get in my word count every morning. This morning as I woke at 6:00 my body and brain felt heavy and filled with inspiration zapping fog. I dragged myself out of bed and fixed breakfast for my son. As I poured the coffee and the delicious aroma steamed up to my nose I smiled. Yes, I need several cups of coffee. Since the time changed the sun comes up later and that always makes it hard for me to wake up. But one look at this beautiful sunrise I feel inspired to get to work. I can do this is the feeling it inspires.

Does a beautiful sunrise inspire you? As for me, I’m off to get in a couple thousand words before a warm shower and then on to the accounting office. I may need that third cup of coffee while I type…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Monday and the rain begins…

As we slowly transition into Spring the rain starts. Here in Georgia we’re looking at rain until Sunday. Of course it’s better than ice, but it’ll make a long, dreary week. In the back of my mind I wonder in the threat of cold weather is gone or if this is just a tease. At least we had a gorgeous weekend which helps with this dreary Monday.

The clocks moved forward this weekend and hopefully you changed yours, if not you might be late for work, just sayin’. It always throws my body into a crazy frenzy when the time changes. I feel tired and sleepy, but am trying to meet my word count goals this morning. For those that have been asking what I’m working on, well it’s Oakley. This book is really fun to write. It’s been humming along nicely. I’ve received so many nice emails and calls about fans enjoying Ridge and I know you’ll enjoy Oakley. This series is beginning to become one of my favorites. I’ll be releasing some snippets before the release date is revealed.

Now, back to the lousy weather this Monday morning. How does the weather affect your writing? Do you write better when it’s snowing and cold, wet and miserable or sunny and delightful? As for me it’s a toss up. I love to sit by the fire when it’s cold and write, but on sunny, warm days it’s nice to sit outside and write. But I do have to say that sometimes the rain puts me in a blah mood, but sometimes it gives me the right mood to write.

Hope everyone has a great Monday and don’t forget to scoot over to my website to see what the March Madness Sale for the day is… stephaniehurtauthor.com.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…