While I like to outline my novels, I almost never write in a truly linear fashion. Inevitably, my mind wanders to the “good” parts of the story and I hear snippets of dialogue in my head, or get a sense of what’s happening between the characters. Some folks are afraid of jumping around in the story, but if the mood strikes, why ignore the muse? Write it down! I’m sure I’ve lost more good lines than I’ve remembered to jot down in the past, so I make it a point to put pen to paper whenever I think of something.
Whether you’re inking it out the old-fashioned way like I do, or use a handy app like EverNote or even send yourself a text, don’t let the moment slip by. Trust me, you won’t remember it later… or you won’t remember it as well. You should always be ready to write something down. With a nod to the old saying, if you wait till you sit down for inspiration, you’re a waiter and not a writer. 😉
I think it comes back to the fact that, as a serious writer (or one who writes with the intention of publishing, whether it’s traditional or self), you should always be thinking about your stories. You never know what will inspire you and you should always be ready and willing to capture your musings.