What is your process when beginning a novel? How much planning do you do before starting to write?
Because I sell a novel on a brief synopsis and a few sample pages, I do some planning beforehand but not a great deal. Often, the novel will change shape once I begin writing and get to know my characters, and when I look back on that synopsis later, I'm amazed to see how far I wandered away from the original storyline. But the themes always remain the same--they're what pull me through to the end.