I've been scribbling away the last couple of days on a new short story, inspired by recent news events here in the West Midlands. There's been a sudden rash of schools targeted by arsonists - more even than usual - and I was vaguely scratching my head and wondering why. Then a little imp in my head piped up with a wonderful theory and I just had to turn it into a story. I'm not going to give the whole thing away but I will just say 'never trust the headmaster'.
I don't often write stories based on news events; too often they've been and gone before I've managed to think my way through an associated plot. For crime stories, though, a trawl through the newspapers can be invaluable. There are so many people doing so many strange and dark things that it's a positive well (sink-hole?) of inspiration.