I’d like to share the way I write with you.
First, I get an idea, and I toy with it for a few hours. I practice the Five W’s:
Who is the story about, who are the other people?
When is this story taking place? When in a time frame of past, present, or future; but also when in the characters live.
What is happening to the protagonist? What’s happening to the other characters?
Why did she do that, why is that happening. In addition, how does she react to these actions/ problems?
Then last, Where, I finally decide where on a map. All of this happens mentally.
Sometimes, I become friends with the Protagonist way before I get the full five W’s answered. She becomes so real to me I hear her talking to me. She tells me her story as if a friend would share hers over a cup of coffee. Soon some of the other characters share their stories or the “why” they do what they do. I listen; at times, I ask questions, so I understand the story better. I get to be inside of their heads, I begin to know them. It gets weird sometimes. Music inspires me, if you read my post How I started writing you’ll know that my Muse usually has music playing in the background. A funny thing happens too, I’ll hear a song, and I’m like “That’s so Emily. It’s exactly what she’s feeling right now.” My family has gotten use to it, but when I first started, I think they considered having me admitted.
I may make notes, but I usually I only do the notes if I want to save that story idea for later (I’m outlining a ghost story, also the werewolf story). I start writing once I know a lot of the story. I don’t write at the beginning and move to the middle and end at the end. I start at what the character tells me. The vampire story for example- Emily is the protagonist; she started talking to me at what is now chapter 5. We moved along the story jumping from scenes by days. I’m currently writing the second part of her novel. She has me writing different scenes still. I’m also writing a paranormal mystery. Haylee’s story, she tells me what to write the same way. We are moving around the story by day’s even weeks. I have close to 40 documents in each folder. I check weekly to see if I can add any scenes into one chapter.
I’ve given you names of the protagonist of these two stories, but names usually take a very long time to figure out. I usually use a number/letter in place of a name until I’m given a name and I have to check meanings and spelling before I agree with a name -though the character is always right (so far).
When you decide you want to write, you also have to decide if you want to write in the first person or third person Point of View. With Emily’s story, I decided to use the third person POV, because there would be missing from her husband. Haylee’s story I also decided on the third POV because of the mystery aspect. If I wrote from her head, the mystery would be given away quickly. The werewolf story and the ghost story I think will be first POV.
When I write short stories, I pretty much follow this same procedure. It’s so much faster when I write short stories though.
If you write, check out Chelsea Brown19’s post, Seven steps to writing a book
How do you write?
Edited to fix links.