I always imagined being a writer as having my laptop at Starbucks or even better some hole in the wall coffee shop, cup of joe in hand, and my creative juices flowing. This so called life would be intertwined with my computer and my future friends of the local shop. I pictured my life to take on new meaning. I expected to one day, start a story at 3 in the morning when the inspiration hit and then end about 6 weeks later when I came up breathing for air with a unedited book from start to finish. Well, things look a lot different than that when I write now. Usually instead of a vintage coffee shop, it is my room or even better, the dining room table. Instead of my nifty laptop that can't process without its charger, it is something pretty old school: my notebook. And interestingly enough, instead of start, it is more like the middle with pieces here and there.
It started because every time I started my "book" I just couldn't. I had all of these ideas, aspirations, and characters but I didn't know how to start because that wasn't what was in my head. Unfortunately, what I do have is clips and scenes... I would see my character reacting to something and or conversations going on but I couldnt start the "book". Instead of writing these things down, and processing these scenes down on paper....I just stubbornly sat with my first page and crossed out sentences and irritatingly bitched about my lack of inspiration.
Yet at one point, one scene kept playing and replaying in my mind. It was like this stubborn nail that kept being rammed into my head. Finally, one night I got up... and played out my 3am scenario. Four hours later, at 7am when everyone else in my house was getting ready for school, I was regurgitating my scene from my notebook to my computer. Felt like college all over again. It was the most I had written ever. There were actually pages that were edited and finished.
So basically, what I am saying is work with what you have. You have an idea cultivate from there..Sometimes you have to start in the middle to understand your character, and the best way to do that is to start with how you see them. For example, I kept seeing my main character going through things that internally were making her grow up. Such as men, weddings, funerals, betrayals, etc... each of these scenes happen and cultivate my character. So I started there.
Don't be afraid to start wherever your fingers or pens are taking you. Trust yourself. You can always go back and fill in between scenes to create flow. And best advice ever... JUST START!!!