There is nothing like being away from creative pursuits to spur inpiration. I take a break from writing during Christmas, while the kids are home from school. I take a short break between books and during Spring Break, if my deadline allows.
And each time, the same thing happens. After several days away from the creative process, something switches on. The gate goes up. Thoughts and ideas flood in from nowhere, from a movie preview, an article, a girl on the street. I write down my ideas. These are the seeds of my future stories.
I love the way it happens. I love the way the creative juices are freed up after being ignored for several days. More than that, it's as if, after being away from imaginative pursuits, my brain MUST get back to it, yearns to get back to it. Writing, art, ideas, anything creative will do really.
Even in New Orleans after Christmas, I felt that creative itch. I played on my computer with photos I took of my family during break. This is my favorite, taken of my 14-year-old son Chad on a street car in New Orleans, after I asked him how he was enjoying the ride. LOL Not so much, as you can see, but he got a good Facebook photo out of the deal.