Some writers know the whole of what they're going to write before they take pen in hand (or set fingertips to keys). Some work it out like a schematic, breaking down every beat of the story - or article - and attach words to that structure. I find these different approaches very fascinating. I'm sure that a correlation can be found between approach to writing and personality types.
Of course that might be a psychobabbling sort of excuse or justification for the fact that for the past week I've been trying to plot out a story and have got exactly nowhere with it. When I look at my Myers-Briggs personality type (INFJ) it is quite clear that story plotting is impossible. It just isn't in my toolkit. So I've decided to not get twisted up about it and instead let my brain work the way it works.
When an idea takes up residence in my mind, it isn't a linear story or even a concept. Instead what I have is an impression, a feeling, or a mood. My imagination is set off by a scene or a bit of dialogue. They often linger in the back of my mind or lie buried and forgotten in notebooks until a way forward is discovered, to build on them, or stretch them, or slot them in, to a bigger, fuller, idea.
Last week, while at work with my mind occupied at cataloguing a book, this phrase popped out of thing air,
"I make my father's gestures with my mother's hands."
I don't know what that is. Will it become a line in a story, part of reflection, or an element of a poem?
It lingers in my mind, though, like the scent of a candle after it's been blown out. It just might turn up here again, in some form.
Meanwhile, I'm working on the idea of Fragments - a story told in pieces rather than a whole. Do you think that works?