Last night I went to sleep knowing exactly what I was going to blog about today.

When I woke up this morning, the idea had gone entirely. Now, I knew this would happen. It’s happened so often. What I should have done was get up there and then and create the post, or at least scribbled the idea down on a piece of paper. If I’d been mid book and fallen asleep thinking about the book and forced myself out of bed to write it, it probably would have been something pretty darn good.

So where do ideas come from? Who knows. But there are certain tricks and techniques that can help so today, I thought we’d play a game. I grabbed a few items from my office (and you have to understand that my office is rich pickings at the moment. We are doing major work to the downstairs of our house and so everything is in boxes everywhere else. I can just about get into my office and sit at my desk). So here’s my impromptu still life–a shell, a bowl, a string of beads, and two pics, one a portrait by Elizabeth Vigee-Lebrun and the other an illustration of the cat who walks by himself by Rudyard Kipling. And it’s not just for writers: comment anyway, because you might surprise yourself and you don’t have to include every item.

Tell me what these suggest to you. 
What is the relationship between (all or some of) the items, how do they fit together?

THE PRIZE: Yes, there is a prize. A copy of my brand new release HIDDEN PARADISE, a sexy contemporary which has lots of sex and stuff about paint analysis and Regency clothes (on and off). It’s not coming out until the end of September and I have just received a big box of author copies (US residents only, must be over 18 and not related to me and all the usual stuff). You can comment here or on my FB author page Janet Mullany, Author. Let me know if you tweet it too, for extra points!

I’m also doing a blog tour for THE MALORIE PHOENIX, stopping today at MK McClintock’s Blog  and The Bunny’s Review. You can see all the blog stops here at Goddess Fish. Feel free to drop in and comment on earlier stops too. The prize is a $20 Amazon gift certificate.

So have fun and frolic online. Winners announced on Sunday July 22.