One of the very best things a writer can do is listen. Perhaps you are in a restaurant and someone in the booth behind you says, “All she wanted was the dog and the car.” You ave an instant idea for a story, or at least a story element. Or perhaps you catch just a phrase, about someone “down on his hunkers.” It’s a lovely, telling phrase, revealing something about the speaker and/or the someone. So practice being an auditory sponge. And don’t forget to keep your notepad handy!