Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Life…As a Writer

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Good morning! Hope everyone had a great, productive weekend. Let’s make the best of the week ahead.

Life as a writer is sometimes crazy. There are stories running through our heads at every turn. Some days it’s hard to do my day job because a character is knocking on my brain, wanting out. But, when I finally sit down to let the character out, they are stubbornly sitting there with arms crossed refusing to come out.

Then, when you get a couple of days to do some serious writing, everything else has to be done. I try to do social media posts and write on weekday mornings. Of course, I need to train myself to wait on the social media posts until after I’ve written my designated word count for the day. Social media is like a leech, it sucks the time out of the morning.

What’s fun is when you have a great story come into your mind, but you’re in the grocery store… LOL! That’s why I have notes on my phone. Usually, I’ll stop where I am and at least get the basics down, if not, I’ll forget them until a much later time.

Oh, and then you have a deadline, but also a list of things to be completed. That’s when you get creative with your time. Even eating breakfast while typing. Ok, so my laptop has crumbs in the keyboard, but it still works.

So, how do you juggle things?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You….


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Tuesday Shoutout

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Hope your Tuesday morning is wonderful! Mine has been blessed so far. For one, I got up this morning, for another I received my March Issue of Southern Writer’s Magazine. What’s important about that? Well, let me fill you in…

This month I’m featured on Page 5 in the Magnolia Corner section. Check it out:

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Pretty cool to be included in such a wonderful magazine that supports writers at every turn. When Gary sent me an email about wanting to include me in the Gallery of Stars I was so humbled, but then he asked me to write something for the Magnolia Corner. If you haven’t subscribed to Southern Writer’s Magazine, then I suggest doing so. As a writer, the subscription is 100% tax deductible, but it goes way past that. This magazine will open new doors for you.

So, go over to http://www.southernwritersmagazine.com/ and check out all the things they offer, like Mic Nite and the Suite T blog. I’m telling you now, it’s a must for writer’s.

Go by and check out my page in the Gallery of Stars at http://authors.southernwritersmagazine.com/stephanie-payne-hurt.html

Visit Me in SW Gallery

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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Cold Monday, warm writing…

First off this morning, I want to express my sadness at the loss of David Bowie. Since I’m over 40, his music filled my radio during my teen years. He was an amazing singer and will be missed.

Ok, on to today’s post. It’s really cold here in Georgia. My outside thermometer is registering 20. Burrrrrr!!!. Thanks to my hubby, I have a warm fire to write by and extra wood. It’s nice and cozy as I sit and write this, but just a look outside and it’s frigid.

At least, I have something warm to write. As you know I’m finishing my over 40 romance, “Seaside Beginnings” and since it’s set on a beach in Tybee Island, Georgia, my mind is convinced I’m on the beach. So, right now I’m sinking my toes into the warm sand and listening to the waves caress the beach, or so my mind thinks.

Here’s a little snippet of the book, hope you like it! Just a note about this part of the book, Maddy and Caden are remodeling the bed and breakfast. Do take into mind, this is from the first draft, so no editing yet!

Maddy looked up at the wallpaper and figured that would be a good place to start. She grabbed her punch roller and the fabric softener she’d put in a spray bottle. The paper came off fairly easy at first, then when she got to the higher sections, she had to use the ladder that Caden had brought inside when he first arrived.
She hooked the spray bottle on her belt loop and climbed the ladder. Whistling a happy tune as she worked, not realizing how far out she was leaning until hands wrapped around her waist, lifting her from the ladder.
“Do I have to watch you every minute? Don’t you realize how dangerous it is leaning out that far from the ladder?” His hands were still on her waist, but neither noticed as he continued to argue with her. “You could’ve fallen from the top and broke every bone in your body, or worse.”
“I’m sorry, I wasn’t paying attention.” Her gaze went to his bare chest, they were too close for her comfort. She pushed his hands off her and turned to grab her bottle of water from the step beside them. Getting her mind off him was the best thing she could do right now. The moment he lifted her off the ladder and brought her close to him, everything in her mind shifted. It had been a long time since she’d felt that way.
“Just try to be more careful.” He shook his head as he walked back out to finish replacing the boards on the porch. When he’d seen her reaching out, the ladder tilting, he lost a couple years off his life. He knew that a couple of extra gray hairs had popped out. What was he going to do with her? Then thinking better of that line of thinking, he went back to work, because that had been on his mind for a couple of days. He thought about her more than normal and deep down his heart told him something wonderful was budding out.
Maddy thought about how he’d continued to hold her, even when the danger had passed. Something inside of her jumped at the feelings that came to mind, but she quickly pushed them away. This was not the time to be thinking in that way. Too much needed to be done and complications would only hinder them. Shrugging, she moved the ladder over and continued to remove the wallpaper.
Caden came back in to check on her. She was unaware of his presence and dropped a wet piece of old wallpaper on his head. “Hey, Hey.”
Maddy looked down to see him struggling to get the large piece of paper off his head. She giggled and covered her mouth to suppress the laugh that bubbled up.
“Oops, sorry.” She tried to look sorry, but the laugh came out instead.
He put his hand in the sticky mess that covered his hair. “Well, that’s nice. Do you have any towels handy?”
She climbed down and walked into the kitchen where she’d placed several towels to use for cleaning. “Here, lean over the sink and I’ll help you wash it out.”
“That’s alright, I’ll just use the hose out front.” He grabbed the towel and left. All he needed was her running her fingers through his hair.
She giggled again as he walked out the door. The rest of the day they worked in separate areas of the house. By the time they left just before dark, a good start had been made.

I’m enjoying the banter between Maddy and Caden. It’s been a fresh, new way of writing for me. Although I miss my cowboys and horses, I’ll go back to that soon, but for now, I’m a beach bum 😉

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Don’t forget “Seaside Beginnings” is up for preorder at most  ebook retailers!

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Best Assistant…

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Good Saturday morning everyone! Hope you’re having a good start to the weekend. Today’s post is about my writing and accounting assistant, Kaleigh.

Some of you, especially if you’re part of my street team, have met her through posts. She’s the person in the background that takes care of my website, my covers, my book designs and my sanity. It helps that she’s my niece, so she has a little of me running through her veins.

Kaleigh attends the University of Georgia and is finishing up her Poultry Science degree. I’ve had her with me again for the last three weeks, but sadly yesterday was the last day at the office for us for a while. But she takes care of me from afar, somebody has to.

She is the one that keeps me grounded, reminding me of release dates, word counts and such. A lot of times she has to get stern with me when it comes to my manuscripts. When she sees something that doesn’t work, she’ll tell me, but sometimes I push back. But in the end, we compromise and make the changes needed. Another issue will be sayings I use or names that make her laugh and shake her head, telling me no I can’t do that.

Everyone needs an assistant like her, because it makes things easier. I probably don’t tell her enough, but I appreciate everything she does to keep me on the right track.

Take the time this weekend to enjoy yourself. We’re not promised tomorrow.

As always, good writing and may God Bless You…

 


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Stepping back …

Good Sunday morning! Here in Georgia it’s chilly but sunny. It will be a beautiful day.  For me, I’m sitting by the fire, enjoying the early morning quiet.

This morning’s post is about the rough draft. I’ve had the rough draft completed and turned into my editor for a week. I haven’t looked at the rough draft since I handed it over. But it has work to be done. I want to embellish on the story, add several elements to help bring his story alive, but I had to step back.

What do I mean by step back? Well, it’s simple. During the writing process sometimes we get too close to a project, then get burnt out. For some reason, the story started slipping away. I still had the bare bones, but the flesh and all the other things that make it a whole story seemed to go out of my brain. I had to step away from it.

Now, I think I’m almost ready to step back into the story. Of course, I’m in the middle of Maggie’s story, but it helps to get into another story to get the one that slipped away back into your brain. It’s still a little foggy, but I think I’ll do fine.

Have you ever had to step back in order to get the story going?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Let’s get to know Lana…

Good Friday morning! It’s been a spectacular week, hope it has for you too! If you haven’t read any of my latest posts, I’m in the running to win a writing contract with Harlequin, yes, you heard me. I’m in the Top 50, so that means I need some votes, but first, let me introduce you to the leading lady in Tuscany, Lana.

Lana is a young woman from Zebulon, Georgia. She was raised by her grandmother, Mama Leona. Her life was as normal as any Georgia country girl. But when her grandmother dies everything she thought about her life changes. Now she has to go to Italy to take on the role as heiress of a huge olive oil farm, Olive Hill.

The problem with this is she never knew about the estate in Italy, much less her grandmother’s wealth. With everything else, she’s given a journal from her grandmother that helps guide her way. Then she meets Romeo, a handsome single Italian man that runs Olive Hill. The sparks fly as they disagree about everything, including the estate. She has one year to decide to keep the estate or sell it.

So, are you intrigued? Help Lana’s story get into a Harlequin romance by voting for the first part, the pitch at https://www.wattpad.com/myworks/48304085/write/161892410.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…


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Coffee, love, laughter…

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Good Saturday morning all! How do you like one of my new rugs? I’m super excited about this one. Can you see why? If you’ve been reading my posts for the last three years then you know why. Hint, there’s three of them… Did you figure it out yet?

This morning as soon as I opened my eyes it was evident the rain was here. So much for some yard work this morning, but I can’t complain because we need the rain. Saturdays at our house are for cleaning and writing. For some reason this week and I’m still a little confused about this one, I actually finished most of my laundry early. That means more time for writing today 😉

If you haven’t checked out my Wattpad entry, then run, don’t walk over there. Votes and views are important for this one. I also enjoy the commments. As a firm believer in the close knit writer community, I want to hear from you. One friend has already helped out by pointing out something that needed tweaking. I’m ever grateful for that too! When someone that doesn’t see the story from your head makes an observation, then you can see it clearer.

Also, for you Five Oaks Ranch fans I have a nifty little surprise that I slipped in this week when you weren’t looking. Ridge is free on most sites for a while. With Chase riding on the heels of publication I had to get some things happening. The downloads have been pouring in, which means there’s an interest in catching up. As I’ve said before, i can’t wait for you to meet Chase, my favorite of the Cauthen brood.

So, what’s your plans for today? Writing? Cleaning? Just being alive? For me, all of the above! My advice for you on this rainy Georgia day, drink a pot of coffee, hug someone you love and laugh a lot…

As always, good writing and May God Bless you…

https://www.wattpad.com/myworks/48304085-tuscany

One more thing before you go! When Tuscany’s entry on Wattpad reaches 25 views I’ll be doing a sweet giveaway, then at 50 and 100! So pass the word around and give me some reader/writer love!