I am sure to **** off lots of "arty" people with this but creativity is mostly just a word we use to describe a new combination of old ideas :) <br />
That doesn't make it bad, or less, incidentally. The best way to get new ideas of your own is expand the range of your influences. <br />
If you really, really want to open up the boundaries, read philosophy. Nietzsche, Aristotle, Plato. I don't agree with most of their conclusions but just chewing on the ideas really lubricates the imagination. <br />
Is there something specific you are trying to generate ideas for?
Fantasy and sci-fi are both genres that like to imagine the limits of what might be possible and sometimes the downright impossible. I suspect that is why people who like one tend to like the other.
Are you looking for concepts to explore or are you trying to develop a story arc?
As for the sketching, I would suggest going back to first principles. Try to think of something that excites you, even if it is something thats done to death. Draw that. During the process more ideas might come to you, especially if you are thinking about things that float your imagination boat :)
If you are working with the middle of a story, that is usually where the reasoning behind the characters motivations and the development of the characters takes place. It might help to consider the nature of the characters, their outlook on life and then ask yourself how they might have gotten that way. It might give you background that the characters can reveal. It is usually interesting to when authors put characters in situations that present particular problems for them given their experiences. Many authors use character development to explore and put into conflict differing worldviews. If you really want your story to have impact I would suggest involving your characters in some situations that are morally ambiguous. That is the kind of thing that makes readers get emotionally involved and allows the subtle differences in each character to shine.
If you are having trouble coming up with scenarios to put your characters in, you could try imagining them in a scenario you are already familiar with. How would they react if they were a character in a book you read or a game. What would be their solution to the problems?
You could always try working it backwards too. If you know how the main story is resolved, you could try imagining what kind of person would do those things or make those choices.
A good story, in my opinion, is one where the characters are believable even if the setting is fantastical. The heart of any good yarn is in the people in it.
I wish I knew! I am a writer and an artist, and I've been waiting for a muse for years. I used to be quite productive, but lately, nah.
Hate to say it; But you probably are ready know: Alcohol or Opiates.