I know how it started - I wrote a thesis on ethnic minority relations in former communist countries (Bulgaria, Romania, Yugoslavia, and the Caucuses)... and no I was in college in the US during the war.
Please, enlighten us with your knowledge about how it stated. I was in Armenia when it all started. My uncle was one of the first voluteers who went to Karabakh to save those Armenians who did not yet faced those barbarians who were burning the Armenian villages left and right, who were stoping the buses, taking the Armenians out of the buses and shooting them on the streets. And like you said Azeris were going door to door looking for Armenians to kill them.
Source please for the buses incident - it is nowhere to be found.
"On 20 February 1988, the Oblast Soviet of the NKAO weighed up the results of an unofficial referendum on the reattachment of Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia, held in the form of a petition signed by 80,000 people.(10) In 1979, the entire population of the NKAO was 162,000, with 123,000 Armenians and 37,000 Azeris.(11) On the basis of that referendum, the session of the Oblast Soviet of Nagorno-Karabakh adopted the appeals to the Supreme Soviets of the USSR, Azerbaijan and Armenia, asking them to authorize the secession of Karabakh from Azerbaijan and its attachment to Armenia. Baku rejected the NKAO Oblast Soviet's decision. The line taken by the Centre seemed to be to wait and see, giving the Azerbaijani authorities the opportunity to resolve the crisis as they saw fit.
After the first direct clash between an Azeri crowd and Armenian residents, near Askeran, in which about 50 Armenians were wounded and two Azeri attackers killed, Deputy USSR Procurator-General A. Katusev, speaking on central TV on 27 February, told the audience about the killing of two young Azeris, specifically naming the nationality of those killed. This announcement may have acted as a catalyst. Within hours, a pogrom against Armenian residents began in the city of Sumgait, 25 km from Baku. The pogrom, obviously prepared months in advance and marked by forms of extreme cruelty, lasted for three days, with the Azeri police nowhere to be seen. Phone calls to the police or the ambulance service went unanswered. Leading AzCP functionaries took part in the meetings which preceded mob violence, and a local Party boss even led the crowds. Moreover, in 1988 the KGB machine with its network of informers was still functioning, from which it may be presumed that Baku, if not the KGB in Moscow, had known about the preparations for the pogrom. Soviet (Russian) troops, including those in Sumgait itself, apparently had strict orders not to shoot. It was not until the third day of the killings that Soviet troops finally intervened, arresting some small fry, mostly youngsters.(12) On orders from Moscow, the Sumgait affair was judicially covered up and the press largely silenced."