Karl May, J.R.R. Tolkien and this awesome lady:
Not sure if her books are available in English but I loved her stories so much I wrote my own Wild West novel at the age of six. It involved a lot of horse riding and tracking and I remember forever terrorizing my parents to buy me a horse and trying to convince them he could live happily and comfortably in the balcony of our tiny city apartment!
I later moved onto Erich Maria Remarque, Herman Hesse, Lord Byron, Goethe, Ray Bradbury, Kurt Vonnegut, Jack Kerouac, Salman Rushdie and Gabriel Garcia Marquez and from then on, I'm always looking for that strange feeling of yearning you get when you close the last page of a really good book. It's a bit melancholy, a sort of longing - it makes you look out the window for a moment and wonder, and then you look back around you and everything is the same the wallpaper and the furniture and your hands... but you aren't the same, even if it's for a brief moment. If I still get that feeling after reading a book, I feel inspired!
For my own writing, I love just listening to people's stories, especially if there's a little superstition or a fragment of a fairy tale or an old saying in their speech, and if they're doing something very ordinary in a very extraordinary way. I'm fascinated how easily and seamlessly the real and the imagined can merge in people's everyday lives and situations.