Ideas can come at any time, anywhere. They are inspired by the world around us. Usually, they happen at the most inconvenient time, like when you are out jogging in the park or drinking champagne at a party or shopping in the supermarket with a kid hanging off the trolley.
Develop the habit of writing down your ideas. Most ideas will disappear in three seconds. Hold on to them while you get your small notebook out of your pocket.
Use your obsessions, infatuations, and confusions in your writing. What interests you?
Write a list of all the things you believe and those things you don’t. Once you know this, you will know where to look to find your stories.
Writing should never be an obligation. Let it be your passion. If you are passionate about your stories, you can live with them as the months roll by and the seasons turn from autumn into spring and through summer to autumn again. Sometimes it takes years to write a story. Be a long-distance runner. Be prepared for the long haul.
There will be times when you lose interest in your story. It will be like falling out of love. Divorce yourself from the idea. Take what you can. Chairs, sofas, tables - scenes, descriptions, characters. Put these in a folder and move on. You never know. Someday in the future, these might become useful again.
There are stories in the discoveries you made, the truth you saw, the tales you overheard.
There are stories about the people you love and hate.
There are stories about the things that make you angry, the things that make you laugh.
There are stories in jeopardy when people have something to lose: family, friends, ideas, opportunities, reputations, dreams.