One goal I had this year, which I hope to at least get caught up with, and continue through next year, is using this pocket diary (weekly, 18 months) from Moleskine to keep a list of items to start new stories. The diary started in July and goes until December 2009. I use the spaces to makes lists of items to include in stories. When I hit a rough spot, I go through and pick around 4-6 items and try to come up with a story and include all the items I chose.
There are 184 days from July 1 to December 31. I have written on a total of 20 days. I'm a lazy writer. But I will add this project to my list for 2009.
A sample: abandoned safe, small plane wreckage found, piano with the strings cut, cracked/broken mirror with piece missing, dressmakers dummy, forged birth certificate, antique car with skeleton inside, pages torn from a diary, abandoned safety deposit box, vandalized tombstone, reading glasses, apple and cinnamon muffins, Bigfoot scare, kidnapped heiress, out-of-date/expired passport, hoodie with torn pocket, forgotten Christmas gifts and 20 years worth of diaries.
So I have no excuse not to be working on something. There are ideas everywhere.