Any story that makes you have to think, use a your imagination and inspires you to dream. Basically anything that makes you think "outside the box."
Reading isn't what usually inspries me to write: I'm inspired by the sights and sounds and intimate discoveries in conversation and the challenge of getting things exactly onto the page - sort of like Scott Pryor's paintings. If I read Karl Popper, say, or Erich Kandel, or sometimes Martin Wolfe in the FT, they can get the writing juices flowing.
Mostly I read comic books and pulp novels now, when I get any time, because I tend to edit as I read on modern authors' works. Music tends to inspire me to write much more than reading.
This is a great question because I don't know the answer! However, some books are so good I feel like quitting. There have been times a novel blows me over and I know I'll never write a story that well. I hang up my pencil for a few days. Then another idea will hit and I'm back at my desk, typing away on the computer.
Biographies of poets, writers, artists, painters.
Any type of writing that has meaning.
memoir, self help books, history and fiction books
Anything light. Something where I can get lost in the characters and put myself in the story immediately. That's what I want my work to do for my readers.
I am mostly inspired by reading poetry; also Henry David Thoreau and Kahlil Gibran.
I read Spiritually-related books, such as Neale Donald Walsch's "Conversations With God" trilogy and others. A skeptic by nature, I only read that which resonates with me and my own belief system. If a book fails to capture me, I just toss it out without finishing.
Good poetry, but also anything with strong, clear emotion behind it.
Well, travel writing, guidebooks, nonfiction inspires me to travel. When I travel, then I am inspired to write. A circular process!
I believe a true writer finds his stories within him/herself and not from other peoples stories.
An extremely exciting news artical. Sometimes it's something i've witnessed happening.
I read a lot of technical papers, science journals, articles, books and blogs. These trigger subjects that I want to explore further.