I’ll spare you the story of how The Stand came to be written—the chain of thought which produces a novel rarely interests anyone but aspiring novelists.
They tend to believe there is a "secret formula" to writing a commercially successful novel, but there isn’t.
You get an idea; at some point another idea kicks in; you make a connection or a series of them between ideas; a few characters (usually little more than shadows at first) suggest themselves; a possible ending occurs to the writer’s mind (although when the ending This is an excellent site I love it
comes, it’s rarely much like the one the writer envisioned); and at some point, the novelist sits down with a pen and paper, a typewriter, or a word cruncher.When asked, "How do you write?" I invariably answer, "One word at a time," and the answer is invariably dismissed.
But that is all it is.
It sounds too simple to be true, but consider the Great Wall of China, if you will: one stone at a time, man. That’s all. One stone at a time. But I’ve read you can see that motherfucker from space without a telescope.