You’ve got questions, I’ve got answers.
One reason I’m full of ideas is because we’re surrounded by inspiration all the time. No matter where you are at this moment, you’re surrounded by inspiration. My stories start with characters. And characters are people. And you are never without people, even when you’re alone. There are people in your head, made-up and otherwise. And you are a person, obviously. (Unless you’re an extra-terrestrial, in which case I’m happy to see that you’re doing an in-depth study of fiction for young readers!)
My short answer is: I get my ideas from everywhere.
I am different from Apple in several ways.
I don’t play any musical instruments. My best friend in middle school (Nicole) was (and still is!) very nice. I have an older sister named Anna. My dad is alive and well.
I identify as Filipino-American.
(P.S. My mother speaks a Cebuano dialect, and so do my Filipino characters. Sometimes readers expect to see Tagalog, which is the national language, but I’m not familiar with Tagalog, since I was raised listening to Cebuano.)
Sometimes I use the names of young people I meet. Sometimes I run polls on Twitter to see which names my readers like best.
Before I put pen to paper, I let the idea build to make sure it’s something worthwhile. (Not all ideas need to be written).
Once it’s formed into something, I buy a special notebook and write down my character and idea. Then I write an entire chapter outline and the first draft in the same notebook.
I don’t set aside specific times to write. I only write when I feel like it. Many writers think they have to follow a routine, but that doesn’t work for everyone. I wrote about it at Writer’s Digest.
The writing process is different for everyone, so you have to find the one that works for you.
I also sketch a lot. I love to draw trees.
More questions? Contact me.