RandyIngermanson.com has a nice article titled "The Snowflake Method for Writing a Novel".
For those of you that are looking for a "magic formula" to help inspire you to write your novel, this just might be it.
This article breaks the whole process down into a 10-step method that begins with a one sentence, less than 15-word description, to summarize the concept of your story.
Then that "triangle" is formed into a "star" and then a "simple snowflake" and then a "complicated snowflake". Ingermanson uses mathematics (he's got a Ph.D.) to compare the art of outlining and plotting the novel writing process.
When I started my novel writing effort I started with this basic process, but got distracted in step three of the "snowflake method" and ventured out on my own to move along a little faster. Once I get the basic storyline down, I plan to fill in the detail ala the "snowflake method" to add depth to my story.
I'd like to hear about how you use the "snowflake method in your writing.