Inspiration and the Idea
When writing the first thing you need it an idea. It is very hard to write without one, not impossible but very hard. I usually start with a character and then listen to them tell me about their life. Sometimes I start with a scene that appeared in my head, but it has to be a very strong scene. Other people start with a line, or a story idea. Something comes to mind and the story comes from that. This thing can be referred to as a muse.
A muse is very hard to pin down and can disappear without warning. It is also very hard to find when you want it. There are a lot of quotes out there about inspiration and muses. The one I best remember is by Jack London. He said “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” Some people sit and wait for the muse to show up, but I find that the muse shows up when I am sitting there writing. It is far more likely to show up when it isn’t expected.
Everyone needs to find their own way of coming up with ideas for stories and inviting the muse to come around. Some people claim that they can only write when they have inspiration. I just sit down and start writing. The first thousand words in a day are always the hardest anyway.