He has a nifty writing exercise in the book (about half-way down on pg 167 in my July 2002 Pocket Books edition) where he gives you a scenario about a common domestic situation, with all sorts of details, and tells you to write your own story around it -- dig for the bones. But the twist is to reverse the sexes of the protagonist and antagonist.
Holy light bulb moment, Batman!
I've had a story about a similar situation that was, frankly, going nowhere. NOWHERE. But when I read that part of the book again, it just slapped me silly and I knew how the story was supposed to go -- 3,000 words later, and by Jove, I think I've got it.
The story is resting for a few days, then I'll do an edit and polish, see if it still feels right. There's a nifty little thing on the Absolute Write boards that I think this will fit nicely.
Now, would I have found the bones of this story on my own? Maybe. Maybe not. The thing is, I now have finished a story instead of one destined for the Trunk of Lost Tales.
Well, Gentle Readers, that's all for now. I've got another pile of bones calling my name, so I must go fossil hunting.