A message forum for general discussion. Please come and chat with others!
Honestly, I'm more of a "pantser" than a plot driven writer. I tend to follow the path of just write, but most of the time those stories have been playing in my head for years, so I'm familiar with the storylines and characters before the letters get put onto a page. When I first was able to write a full length novel, that wasn't the process I used to get that far.
What helped me jump into the novel length and finally write that novel was National Novel Writing Month. On here, there is a month long prep challenge that takes place the month before NaNoWriMo. The prep included outlines (a couple more drafts than I needed but still did as part of the process), characters sketches, sample writings and other questions related to the story to help build up before making the big step to the writing phase. Before taking part in that challenge, the longest thing I had written was only around 10,000 words. I didn't write a long novel and it needed rewrites and edits, but it was a big stepping stone.
Since then I've written various lengths (from 50k to 170k), some with prep work and others where I just started from the beginning and kept writing.
Finding what works for you may take some trial and error. But don't be afraid to write something imperfect. It's okay to "suck" as one might say. In fact, there is a writing podcast that was produced years ago that promoted the option, in particular for first drafts. Remember, you will have rewrites and edits later down the road. Explore the process and find a way to write that works best for you and the story you have in progress.