The answer is different for each writer but I encourage all of you to start writing as soon as you first wake up – dreams can lead to terrific snippets of inspiration – and keep going throughout the day. The past few days I’ve been struck with inspiration the moment I woke up. I took note of what I was thinking and feeling and it helped me tremendously in my writing later in the day.
Note: A notebook is your best friend as a writer and you should have one next to your bed and in your pocket/purse during the day.
As an exercise:
What does your main character think about as soon as he/she wakes up? I have been stating with a 3-minute interior monologue for whichever character’s scene I am writing. Try it, let me know what you find out.