How Writers Find Stories

In the reading, the first section is concerned with how authors find and begin to cultivate their ideas to create stories.   I found the reading to be reassuring in a way because it said to me, you’re not unimaginative, and this is the process.   Somewhere along the road to literature, I began to feel like true original writing only came to “real writers” from the ether of nothingness.   Like the Buddha sitting under a tree waiting for enlightenment, a real writer had stories thrust onto him from this magical source of inspiration; imagination.
I felt as though I had no originality and a very limited imagination.   My stories were about my travels, my experiences, about things that I heard people say and never finish leaving me (the only one who could now) to supply the ending.   I thought that I was the only one who made up stories about “how it really happened” after hearing some news story that I couldn’t shake myself loose of.   I used movies that touched me to lead me into ideas, actors to base character details (making an amalgam of two to physically describe my character).   I even used settings and set designs to help develop settings in my stories!   None of it seemed original.
I can remember two specific occurrences of where these beliefs began.   The first was “career day” in the sixth grade.   Being an unfortunately inattentive mother, mine could at times say insensitive things flippantly and without much notice or regard to the effect they may have on the impressionable child she should have cared for.   I came home excited to tell her all about “career day” and I burst through the front door demanding her attention.   I carried on for at least twenty minutes, recounting everything that happed through the day; culminating with my big finish, “I want to be Stephen King; my teacher said that really means I want to be an author!”   At the mention of a familiar name (that she is not particularly fond of), she looked up from her crossword puzzle and flatly replied,...