I am often asked the above questions. The “why” isn’t too hard to answer. Besides enjoying the writing process (except for too much tedious editing!) I hope there is something in my novels that someone enjoys or that they may receive a message from they appreciate. Recently, I had a reader tell me they used my book “As We Forgive Those” as a basis for their lesson in a Sunday school class. I would have never imagined, but was so glad to hear this.
As for “ideas” it’s a different story. I pull some ideas from life experiences–mine and others, places I’ve traveled, and occasionally, social issues. But these are the extras I add to the story. I must’ve been born with an imagination, because when I’m open and listening in a quiet space, a story seems to come “through” me.
While vacationing in Hawaii last fall in such a peaceful place, the ideas for my current work in progress, working title “Where She Belongs” came about. With no writing tools, I grabbed a pen and paper from the hotel room and took down notes so I wouldn’t forget the ideas popping into my head. I had planned to write a different novel before the trip, but this one pushed its way in. So don’t be afraid to ask “what if?” and see where it takes you. Even if it’s only to a daydream, you’ll be better for it.