This weekend, I've been watching the 100 Greatest One-Hit Wonders of the 80's on VH1. Being a product of the 80's, I have enjoyed the nostalgia. But I have also been thinking about the label of being a "one-hit wonder." Is that a positive or negative way to look at things? How amazing to create something that is loved by many people and over years and years in time. Is it a burden to then realize that you "peaked" long before your career was over?
I was reminded of this TED talk by Elizabeth Gilbert. She wrote Eat, Pray, Love a few years ago. It's a book many (including me) adore. But she talks about the pressure that comes with having a hit...and people wondering what you will do next. She's been researching creativity and how it's been viewed in human history. If you have the time, I definitely recommend watching her presentation.
I am loathe to view Creativity as some sort of entity, and yet I can't deny that there does seem to be some sort of confluence of inspiration and being at the right time and in the right place that makes for a masterpiece---whether it's a one-off or one of many. Considering this, how do we best nurture the creative urges of our students?