To my ears, the use of the word “inspire” in that context has a magical or mystic ring to it, as if God, as per the Sistine Chapel, had reached down, and with a divine spark, gave Adam life, and to an author, his or her book.
In fact, the true meaning of the word “inspire” is actually closer to the mark of what really happens. That is, the writer breathes life into an idea. Crudely put, think of an idea as a balloon, without air. One blows into it and a shape is formed. That to me is what inspire is all about.
That said, it’s rather difficult to pin-point the exact moment when an idea comes into life. At the moment I am working on a book for which I had (or was given) the idea perhaps some forty years ago. Somebody told me a story about something they did, and it stayed with me. For a very long time. What took you so long to write it, you might ask? To that question I have no good answer.
In any case, I am going to commence a series here which will be stories about my stories, that is, what I remember as to how I came to write each of my books. The stories as to what inspired me vary hugely from that above, to someone telling me about an event, to a dream, or seeing or reading something. One book was inspired because I passed by an historical road marker, which virtually gave me a story. Another book came about (one of my favorites) because someone, a perfect stranger, made a casual remark to me about a building. In some cases one idea inspired me to have a completely different idea, and book. Inspiration can evolve.
I can only admit that some of these stories will be quite mundane. Others, I hope, you will find truly interesting.
So there you are. Surely there must be some of my books you have missed. Perhaps, with these stories about my stories, I can inspire you to reach for them. Mind, to be inspired only means that I desire to breathe life into an idea so that it becomes a book.
Only you, the reader, can decide if I have given the idea life.