The blank page is daunting. So, never begin your novel without thinking things through. Okay, you can, and that is fine if you can and want to work that way. However, to make the prospect of writing something that holds together a reality, creating an outline is an essential process.
Here is a simple outline of how to make an outline: (did you see what I did there?)
Write a brief synopsis
Define the beginning, middle and end of your story. Does it have a progression that makes sense?
Master plot list
Write a master plot list for each character. What do they need to do? Begin with your main character and work down the list.
Backstory for each character
Who are your characters and why are they acting in this way? What is the motivation of each character?
This might feel prosaic, however, the more you can outline the easier it will be to write. When you are unsure what will happen next you can refer to the synopsis, or the plot list of each character, or their motivation.
Don’t worry if you think creating an outline will restrict what you write. It is a guide. Sometimes the greatest adventures are when we stray from the path…
For all my longer works I write chapter outlines so I can have the pleasure of departing from them later on” Garth Nix
Take your writing further with Write a Short Story