If you're a writer, chances are you'll be using most conversations to pitch, however inadvertently. You spitball a story with your partner, seeing how they react to the latest flight of fancy to escape your imagination. You'll be on the phone talking to another writer, discussing what's keeping the two of you busy and what jobs you're currently procrastinating over. Or you'll be having a drink with friends, trading quips and trying top each other's jokes.
It's time like that when inspiration strikes that I always wish I had a pen and paper, so I could capture the lightning in a bottle. Of course, I never do, so end up trying to commit the spark to memory instead - a faulty, misfiring mechanism at the best of times. When I do carry a notepad and pen with me, nothing ever comes that's worth writing down. Sod's law, I guess. Still, sometimes something entirely unrelated will bump the forgotten back into the light.
So it was when I read this entry in Jane Espenson's excellent blog about a close encounter of the Beatles kind. It shook loose a gag about the lost five gospel of the New Testament, the Book of Ringo. Seemed amusing at the time, but I'm no comedy writer, so I guess you needed to be there [or be drunk] to find it funny. Anyway, I highly recommend Jane's blog, full of juicy nuggets, intelligent thoughts and a daily recitation of her rather worrying lunch diet.