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?
Sounds about right to me. I have a beginning, middle, and end, and the HOW is what happens along the way.
1. How do you create your characters? Do you have a specific method?
Oftentimes real people walk into my novels. Other times, it’s combinations of real people, but no one in particular. Then there are characters I totally make up.
2. Do your characters come before the plot?
Yes and no. In my present project, most of the characters are based on people who once lived. But I needed other people too, so I invented them as the plot called for them.
3. Do you know how the story will end before you begin? In a general way or a specific one?
Definitely. It’s what happens along the way that is a surprise. I’ve oftentimes said that writing a novel is like reading a really good book except it’s you writing it. You don’t know what’s going to happen next.
4. Do you choose settings you know or do you have books of settings and plans of houses sitting around?
They’re totally in my mind.
5. Where do you do your research? On line or from books?
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?
I revise as I go along. The first draft is the hardest, and it’s usually just awful. Then I go back and fix things up. After I’ve finished the whole book, then I fill in the missing things. And yes, the characters take on a life of their own.
7. Where can we find you on the net?