A question I'm asked over and over (and over), and my least favorite question, is this:
"Where do you get your inspiration?"
Frankly, I hate the question because I don't understand it. If inspiration were obtainable by artificial means, as the question implies, everyone would have it. The most pertinent definition in my Webster's is "a sudden creative idea or act."
How can I explain where my ideas come from? Ideas are the product of a witch's brew of circumstances: watching the news, long thought, another book, the act of washing dishes, a single gesture in a play . . . all of these can combine to spark a train of thought that leads to something new, something I think is worth pursuing. Connections occur in my head, and all of a sudden something is happening in my book that I think is worthy of being recorded, important enough in its revelation of character or plot.
Some days it really IS like a lightbulb going on over my head -- on very good days. Other days, I sit and stare and think about my cuticles.