Blogging can provide an insight into the lives of so many people from such a variety of cultures and backgrounds. Yet, I don't think paper or books will ever be bettered in their appeal to people. Holding a weathered hardback complete with a musty odour doesn't warrant comparing with a whirring laptop. I love books. I'm a hoarder of books. I hate to give them away yet love to lend a favourite one to friends. Second-hand books are particularly appealing, especially if they have little notes or message held within. One of the first novels I read was "A Town called Alice" by Nevil Shute. Inside the front cover was the message "To Annie- for being there when I needed you most, Phillip". It was written in a beautiful, cursive reminiscent of another time when handwriting was a skill that mattered and impressed. Those short few words contained infinite possibilities for me. Who were these people? Did any of the characters in the book reflect these people? What had brought Phillip to write this message?
Recently, I stumbled on some site containing some voyeuristic gems that could inspire a thousand different in a thousand different people. Found magazine is a collection of found notes, napkins, letters, lists etc. Today's one is an inky post-it with the message "Thank you for defending my honor last night". Gold. Others are achingly real.
Another site, Post Secret allows people to do exactly that - post their secrets. Some hardy Valentine reality contained within.
I'd imagine for any writer grasping for inspiration would find plenty fodder between these sites.