Having met the charming and winning Alissa York in person a couple of times, I encourage everyone to read this charming and winning interview-slash-blog entry she's done with Words at Large. I'm consistently fascinated by the process of writing and how different authors approach research. But I absolutely adore how things pop into Alissa York's mind and then she's like, "hum, I know nothing about it." Like bog-living, Bountiful, and all the other flotsam and jetsam that writers come across in their daily lives and think, "that would make a good story."
I collected an idea like this from The Toronto Star, and ended up writing a short story for my class based on the article the other day. It's kind of liberating to discover that not every single bit of a story needs to be the product of an amusing muse or an overactive imagination. In my earlier years, I simply wrote exactly what I knew, which wasn't much. Now, I'm obsessed by the fact that ideas, words, sentences, books, stories, can come from just about anywhere, real or imagined.