One writing exercise from the book that I liked was this one:
“Sketch a floor plan of the first house or apartment, or a map of the first neighborhood, you remember. Place an X on the spots in the plan where significant events happened to you - the tree house from which you used to look into the neighbors’ window, the kitchen in which you found out that your parents were going to divorce, and so forth. Write a tour of the house as if you were a guide, pointing out its features and its history. If a story starts to emerge from one of the settings, go with it.”
I’m in between books, for a few days anyway, and might just do this. I lay awake last night thinking of my tour: this is the window I broke when I put my knee through it trying to sneak in late one night, here is the door my mom hid behind with a table knife dipped in blood when she knew I’d been across the street watching a scary movie about a crazed killer, etc.