Attached below is a sample patent flow chart. I start with the inventor’s conception of the idea. Included are the steps to be taken to reach the point of possible patent filing. (Note my sample assumes that a provisional application is filed first. However it is possible to go directly to the Non-provisional application filing. However you really need to talk to a patent attorney to properly file a Non-provisional application.)
I hope this helps clarify the process. I am always available to answer questions. 713-514-0137 or firstname.lastname@example.org.