Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't. Sometimes they surprise me by selling years later.
Occasionally though, an idea goes nowhere.
Such was the case with my half-day in Los Angeles, USA, back in September 2009, when I was en route to Montana with a group of journalists for a hosted tour.
I didn't want to venture too far from the hotel near LAX, given time was limited, so it occurred to me that a walk along the nearby beaches might make an interesting story for Australian travellers similarly transiting LA with time to kill.
There were some fun business names here too: Baja Sharkeez, Cafe Bonaparte, Fat Face Fenner's Fishack.
The pier looked attractive, stretching out into the Pacific. I was surprised though at the flatness and depth of the beaches, quite different from the dune-backed Australian beaches I was used to:
This spaciousness lent itself well to beach volleyball courts, and I could see plenty of these...
... along with a statue honouring local lifesavers (known as lifeguards to Americans):
From the pier, I could see a real-life lifeguard setting up traffic cones to mark the patrolled swimming area:
Walking south along the shore toward Redondo Beach, I passed by houses which were built right up to the edge of the sand, no doubt occupied by the rich and/or famous. A good opportunity to examine some of California's distinctive Mediterranean-inspired architecture:
After an hour or so I reached Redondo Pier. This was quite different from the fingerlike Hermosa Pier - instead it was an enclosure of concrete, timber and steel, sheltering an off-limits stretch of rocky beach.
Redondo Pier clearly had a lively personality at a more festive time of week. Along one arm were arrayed a number of small timber restaurants - Chinese, Italian, seafood - with views over the water.
There was also a Great White Shark exhibition, and a stall selling hot dogs on a stick. The atmosphere was definitely that of a popular seaside pier from a century ago.
But it was mid-morning on a Wednesday, and entirely the wrong time to witness its energy in full flow. So I prepared to leave.
But before I caught a taxi back to the hotel, I ordered a hot dog (sans stick) for $2.50, laden with mustard, onion and pickles. It was good.