We all know there are six elements of fiction. Who, What, When, Where, Why and How. I believe the first five lead to the sixth which for me is plot. What's your take on this?
Agreed. Once I've figured out the first five, then the plot follows. I usually have a basic plot in my head. Murder, mystery etc. But the characters or the timeframe or location begin to play away with the rest as I answer the first five.
1. How do you create your characters? Do you have a specific method?
No. That's the weird part. I might see someone or something on TV and ask myself what if? or I look at someone and ask the same thing. What if? So I guess I'm wrong. My method is asking what if? the who, what, why, when, how, take over from there.
2. Do your characters come before the plot?
Often yes. I might have a basic idea for a plot, but the characters soon form and take over from there. Usually changing the plot in unexpected ways.
3. Do you know how the story will end before you begin? In a general way or a specific one?
I sometimes write the final scene first or very early on, and build towards it. But the characters dictate the middle ground.
4. Do you choose settings you know or do you have books of settings and plans of houses sitting around?
I usually pick a setting and then research the area and history etc. The research, I find, helps build the story and scenes. For Example I'm working on a murder crime novel set in Victoria. In the research I found out it has a reputation for one of the most haunted cities in Canada. So I've added a ghost and put a character that is visiting Victoria for the hauntings.
5. Where do you do your research? On line or from books?
I used to mainly go from books. But a lot is now done online. Everything from pictures to location information can be found very quickly.
6. Are you a draft writer or do you revise as you go along and why? Do you sketch out your plot or do you let the characters develop the route to the end?
A draft writer, sorry I don't struggle behind a team of horses or cows. HA! But I've a wicked, twisted sense of humour. No, I usually believe in writing flow and just pound out the story as it hits me or as the characters bribe me. So, beer and red wine is very effective. Oh, and comic books. They will get you everywhere with me. Actually I read thousands of comic books in my younger days. The action, visuals still play in my head. that's usually what I see, scenes like in a comic book. Boom, Boom, Boom. One step, one scene at a time, without the cheesy ads.
7. Where can we find you on the net?