Need a topic to write about or random thoughts to get your brain working? Why not ride the wave of the fickle attention of the American public? Here are couple of ways to get access to what people are thinking about and talking about right now!
Google hot trends gives a constantly updated list of what people are searching for on Google. For instance, today people are searching for “On Golden Pond”, “Juanita Bynum” and “High School Musical 2 dance along.” Just combining those three things could provide you with a wonderful plot to a short story. Or a show on the Disney Channel about growing old and spousal abuse.
You could also check out what people are dreaming about. Dreamjournal has a number of interesting ways to view the symbols and plots of a large sample of dreamers. Here is a bunch of charts to show you what dreams are popular right now.
In any case, if you aren’t getting anywhere with what’s in your own head, try using what’s going on in everyone else’s.