I see a scene in my head; a landscape, a character, an interaction. I watch it like a movie and can zoom in, slow it down, focus on tiny details to get the scene down. I get these scenes often but then, like Columbo, I have to work out what on Earth is going on.
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After five years of getting a scene here and there I have about 20,000 words organised into random chapters and now the back story is presenting itself. Being a part of this unfolding process, I realise how much easier the 20,000 words would have been had I already known the back story. But there again, I don’t suppose you can control inspiration.
I’m still waiting for that “oh, before you go, just one more question” moment that Columbo gets near the end of each episode. The question to let you know he knows what’s going on. When I get that, I’ll know what the voices in my head are trying to tell me. Although, this seems to be a very long episode.
How do you write fiction? Characters first, plot later? Theme? Scene? Storyline? What comes first? Leave me a comment below.