Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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A crisp, cool morning…

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Good morning! Here in Georgia, it’s finally feeling like fall. I love this time of year. And the fun part is, my writer’s brain goes into overdrive. Which gives my fingers a workout and my computer a heart attack.

I’m working on the 2nd book in the Wishful Harbor series. It’s actually based at this time of year, so I feel the cool, crisp bite in the air as I write the words. I can see the landscape around me. The leaves are turning and the sky is bluebird blue. As my characters walk up the sidewalk, I can smell the fresh crisp clean air. Yes, I get lost in the world of my characters everytime I work. It’s amazing the world’s I’ve seen through the eyes of my characters.

So, when’s your favorite time of the year to write?

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

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Closing a story…

It’s looking to be a rainy Monday here in Georgia, but I’m smiling. This weekend I published Promises Forgotten, the 2nd book in the Sky Ridge Series. I’m super stoked about that release. But I have another surprise for my readers…

I published a book in 2013 that was left on a cliffhanger. The book held my heart in many ways, but the 2nd book seemed to stay just far enough away that I couldn’t get it to work right. Every time I started to write the 2nd book, it would slip away. Well, it all came flowing in a couple of weeks ago, coming in like a tidal wave. Then on Saturday, I wrote the last word with a satisfied sigh.

It’s so crazy. When I was writing the first book, Open the Heart, the continued story was at the tip of my tongue, but then it just went away. So, as some authors do, I put it away until it came back. I didn’t want to do the first book injustice or the characters. I’m excited that Lacey’s Choice is about to be published.

So, as I drift through this haze of accomplishment, I hope all of you have a fantastic day!

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

Lacey's Choice front cover

 


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Friday writing…..

Good morning everyone! It’s Friday and I’m feeling ready for the weekend.  I know, I’ve been out of pocket for a little bit, but I’m back in the saddle. With several projects on the horizon, I’ve been focusing on those.

Speaking of juggling projects, as a writer, I’m constantly striving to better myself and my writing by taking courses, reading everything I can about it and checking out other author’s style of writing. It’s just the way I roll. So, in several articles lately, I’ve read that the first thing I need to do is write, then write some more. Everything stated that hitting a word count every day was important, so that’s what I’ve been working on. The only thing is since I run a busy accounting office, that leaves little time to blog or promote on social media like I need to.

I’ve always talked about my writing planner. It keeps me on track. But, for the last couple of years, I’ve pushed myself too hard and inflicted high daily word counts on my brain. Well, in one of the articles, it said to get real with yourself. It has actually helped me. I grabbed a new planner at the store and rewrote out my plan of attack. I’ve lowered my daily word count and it’s amazing the amount of work I’m able to do. This is my first week with the new counts, but I’m already seeing a huge difference. Even though my word count is lower, I can write more if I have time, but I’m not pushed into doing too much and putting myself in a bind.

So, are you pushing too hard? Try the lower word count requirement and see if you’re not more productive without the added pressure. It’s helped me.

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


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It’s Release Day…..

Breakwater Lane Front Cover

Good Thursday morning! It’s release day! Do I sound excited? Well, I am… Breakwater officially released today and I’m beyond excited. This series is so much fun to write and I can’t wait to hear from my adoring readers.

**Small Town Romance**

When Jordan Reed inherits her grandfather’s deli in small town Wishful Harbor, her life is turned upside down. Things start to look better when her childhood crush, Skylar, turns out to be her new contractor. When someone tries to intervene in Jordan and Skylar’s relationships the mysteries of Jordan’s family start to unravel. What she learns could change her life and her family’s reputation forever.

If you didn’t preorder your copy, it’s still only .99 for today only! So grab it now…

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

https://www.amazon.com/Breakwater-Lane-Wishful-Harbor-Book-ebook

 

 

 


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Outlines, Notebooks & other such things…

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It’s Saturday morning and I’m ready for a little rest and restoration. Of course, you know I’ll be writing, it’s my Saturday thing to do. When you run a busy accounting office, most of your intense writing comes on your days off.

Take notes... You'll need them later...

Now with intense writing sessions, you have to use your time wisely. This is where detailed notes and outlines come in handy. When I sit down to write, I like to have everything at my fingertips. If I’m writing a book, say, for instance, Breakwater Lane, I want to have my character information close at hand. Why? Well, it helps me to just look at the character list beside me. If I forget a secondary characters name, I just glance at the list and keep going. But without this list, well, I’d have to go back to where I last wrote about them to check. That takes away valuable writing time.

Outlines are helpful…

I’m an outliner, most of the time. When a story comes into my head, I like to sit down and outline it while it’s fresh. If the story comes in bits and pieces as some do, then I just write down the basics of what has come to my head. As with Sky Ridge Series, I have in my head what each of the three books will be covering, but without the outline, I’d overtake the story from the next book. I want to make sure that each book covers its own situation.

Don’t let a lack of organization throw you off track…

Some people say that outlines mess them up and that’s ok. Everyone has their own style. It’s the way we’re made. But for me, outlines keep me focused on the story at hand. You might ask if I’ve ever changed a story from the outline? Yes, several times. Take, for instance, Finding the Right Time. I had it completely outlined, but my characters would not behave and they went off script. If you’re not a writer, that might sound a little off, but it’s true. Characters can have a mind of their own and they go off down the rabbit hole, leaving the outline in the dust. That’s when you pick up the outline, dust it off, then adjust as needed. It works, believe me.

Notebooks… Notebooks… Notebooks…

Now, I have notebooks for each of my series. I keep details about characters that are in each book. That way I keep up with who died, who left to never be heard of again and such as that. On my stand-alone’s, I don’t always have a dedicated notebook, just an outline with notes in the margins. I put the characters at the top, then the outline. But the notes in the margins can be added characters, character flaws or just location descriptions. Anything you think will be needed later, add it.

It only takes a second to lose that train of thought…

So, to sum up, my rambling from above, if you feel disoriented or unorganized when writing, it’s normal. But there are ways to make it easier on yourself. These are just a couple of the things I do.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

 


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Ants! Ants! Everywhere…

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Good morning everyone! Oh and let me say good morning to the ants that are invading my house… To say I’m overwhelmed, well, that would be an understatement. But, in the south, it’s a part of summer.

Ok, so let me explain the new adventure at my house. It’s called the follow the ants and find where they’re coming from. The game isn’t fun. It’s not glamorous. It’s not productive for my writing. But, for my sanity and my family, I play this game daily.

Let’s start with this morning. I’m laying in bed, enjoying the peaceful bliss of the last moments of sleep when my hubby kisses me goodbye before work, but whispers, not sweet nothings, he informs me that ants got on him while eating breakfast. Well, needless to say, I got up and made my way to the kitchen.

Now, you know me, I’ve got to have my coffee before I can function, so, I grabbed a cup of coffee and sat down to watch the news. After one cup of coffee, I was ready to check out the problem at hand. LOL! One inspection of the kitchen pantry and I needed another cup of coffee. Those little menaces were trailing up behind the shelves and straight into a box of honey nut cheerios. Millions of the little suckers.

What’s amazing is when I trailed them back down the wall, across the entry way, through the entire kitchen and dining room, around the corner and down the hallway, which is rather long, I found them. They were coming out of nowhere, just appearing, but upon closer inspection, they were coming from behind the molding. Really?????

How on earth did these tiny pests smell my honey nut cheerios from that far away? They only were going to the cereal. But by the way, they were marching through my house, you’d think they were headed to a feast laid out across the counter. So, in disgust and anger, I tossed my box of cereal out the back door and began sweeping up ants. Did I say I’d only had one and a half cups of coffee? Yeah, that’s why I was sweeping them up. I needed more caffeine for my brain to actually work well with itself.

So, now as I sit here, typing my post, the fumes of the poison (household safe) I sprayed fills the house, I have to ask, what is the purpose of these little insects? I mean, do they actually have a purpose other than driving me insane?

Ok, so, rant over. Hope everyone is well on this Friday morning.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…

By the way, don’t forget that the pre-order for Breakwater Lane is still going until August 31st when it releases. Also, hop over to Love Kissed Promotions for the chance to win a Kindle, just click here August Preorder Sale & Giveaway


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Hitting Publish…

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Good morning everyone! It’s a great morning to be alive. I’ve just submitted the final edited version of Breakwater Lane and I feel so nervous. When you put your work out there for the whole world to see and read, well, sometimes it’s overwhelming. Even after over 35 published titles, I still get the major butterflies when I push that button.

I love the newest messages on Amazon. This one had me getting another cup of coffee. Of course, you all know it doesn’t take much coaxing for that to happen.

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Does it ever get old seeing your manuscript in your hands? Never! My hands shake as I hold the manuscript and I never take it for granted. This is a special honor to me that I’ll always treasure.

So, what do you do just before hitting the magic button? For me, I stress over the manuscript, reading it over one last time, then my finger hovers over the keyboard before touching enter.  I hyperventilate for a few minutes, then I push the button and watch the wheel spin.

As always, good writing and May God Bless You…