I write award-winning historical romance about pirates, privateers, smugglers and the occasional possum.
I was at a funeral today for an acquaintance, much beloved in the community. We weren't close, but I had a great deal of regard for him and wanted to pay my respects. I realized about mid-way through the service that when it was the church-service part and not the eulogies I was taking mental notes. I'd never been to a funeral for this particular Christian denomination, so it was a new experience.
That's the writer's life. No matter what comes along, when it's a new experience, part of you is taking notes, in case you ever wanted to write about it in a book.
So now when you hear someone asking an author, "Where do you get your ideas?", you've got a partial answer. Funerals, ziplining, a ride on the New York subway, planting a spring garden, these are all grist for the writer's mill. When you see an author staring off into space and looking profound, they're writing something in their head.
Now you know.