I used to plot out my stories, but I found that I would never finish them. With the first novel I completed in June, I just sat down with a premise, a main character, and a initial event, and started writing.
I usually think about two or three events ahead of where I’m at so I have a goal in mind for my characters, but nothing so super solid that it’s inflexible. I also like to have a general idea of where I’m going to end up. Other than that, I’m pretty much a pantser (writing by the seat of my pants…and no, I didn’t coin that title).
But everyone’s different. You just need to find what works for you. Good luck!