There are a number of ways I have heard authors describe their writing process. For me it is a combination of visual images and the translation of that imagery to words for others to enjoy. I see the scenes of my books playing out in my head. It is like shooting a lot of raw footage then going back to edit them together to make a cohesive movie. There are even varied versions of the scripts to get the dialogue right.
My favorite part is the ending. It is that way for both the movies in my head and the ones I watch in real life. There is nothing quite like a powerful ending that will stick with me for days after I see it. I will think about the way all the different parts of the story came together, I amy be critical of any loose ends that aren't addressed, and I will look for what may have followed for the characters. Even movies that do not have a sequel rarely end the story at the end of the movie. When you have made a connection with the characters it is easy to imagine what they may have gone on to do after the credits rolled.
In my head, the endings always play out that way. They are written the way the movies I love are filmed. In each of my books I ended with scenes that made my heart feel full and the characters fulfilled a destiny I knew they were meant for all along. Even in the ones I am working on writing or rewriting have movie style endings. Sharing Strength actually has an ending that fits with a song that, if it were made into a movie for real, I would request it to be filmed a certain way. There is a panning of a gallery showing a series of photographs that perfectly capture the hearts and personalities of the characters of the book and I wrote the scene with that song playing in my mind.
Part of the reason I write the way I do is because I want my readers to be able to see the things I see and be moved by them. By making the ideas as visual as possible I can help transport the reader into my world and let them know the characters in a way I have already introduced. Books that move me tend to be the ones I feel like I am a part of. When I am drawn in, can see what the characters see and feel for them as though I was standing next to them, I am more likely to stay up until the wee hours to keep reading and to seek out that author in the future. I do my best to be one of those kind of authors as well.