So, on that subject, are you a 'pantster'? that is, do you write your original stories as you go along, having little to no idea where they're going, or do you plot and plan things to the nth degree? Or perhaps you're somewhere in between. Tell me how you approach your own stories; what do you do to get things going, and how do you keep up the momentum?
I am definitely a pantster. I tend to get an idea for a 'situation' more than a complete story, although sometimes, like a miracle, an over-all story idea will present itself and I just have to find a way to get from point A (the start) to point B (the end). I will fully admit that I am not at all good at plotting out the whole thing, although every now and then I will form the outline and then expand on that.
I tend to be a bit slack on research unless the topic is one that interests me; otherwise I get rather 'vague' on details for it, or approach it from a character who knows equally as little as I do! Or I reach out to people who may give me pointers, like in one fic I had one of my protags playing American Football... OMG, write what you know, they say. Uh... no? He was a quarterback, and one scene had to have him fumbling a play towards the final minutes of the game so that his team lost. I can only hope that my good friend at the time who was helping me with the sport stuff didn't have to pull out too much hair at times like that!
I have had two stories come to me wherein I knew EXACTLY where they had to finish - and I mean this geographically and in what place in the area specifically, rather than what the end-point of the story had to be! The first was only roughly imagined when I started writing, but I knew it needed to end behind a potted plant at the airport. I kid you not... and YES, I did end it there. The rest of the convoluted tale (of the self-same quarterback & his first love) had to work itself out as I went along, although I did manage to plan out the over-arching plot very vaguely as I went along.
The second such story is still not finished. It is supposed to end up on horseback approaching the Auckland Harbour Bridge, with lights coming on in the Auckland Hospital as our two young heroes look on in wonder. It's a post-apocalyptic fic set here in NZ in which there are few people left in the world, no power and no government, so... yeah. Anyway, I have written 25K of this fic some years back - something I was inspired to write solidly over a few months, but then I put it aside and have not returned to it yet. *sigh* Unfortunately, I have so many WIPs now, that my poor brain can't cope, but I like to think I will get back and finish it, because James and Paul need to get to that bridge!
And, before I get too carried away, I should probably finish here by saying that I recently started another WIP that I have actually written an outline for, although so far I have changed the names of all three lead characters and slightly altered the start. So much for plotting! I plan to start posting that fic soon, unbeta'd and in short chapters so that it's easily digested, and my aim is to finish the whole thing since I actually know where it should go, if I can manage to get back on track! ;-)
Now, I'm all ears... tell me how you work and what are you looking at right now? is it going to plan... or lack thereof?