Crazy and creativity: is there a connection?

Do you have to be mentally ill to be creative?

Psychology Today doesn’t think so. This article points out that most people think coming up with the idea the hard part, but truly creative people know that’s not true.

So what does matter?

Persistence. Hard work. Trial and Error. Skill. The ability to tell a good idea from a bad idea.

Here are a couple of quotes from the article:

Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, best known for his work on flow, has spent four decades studying the creative process. He recounts the experience of sculptor Nina Holton. “Tell anybody you’re a sculptor and they’ll say, ‘Oh, how exciting, how wonderful,'” Holton told him. Her response to such comments: “What’s so wonderful?” Then she explains that being a sculptor is “like being a mason or a carpenter half the time.” She finds that “they don’t wish to hear that because they really only imagine the first part, the exciting part. But, as Khruschev once said, that doesn’t fry pancakes, you see. That germ of an idea does not make a sculpture that stands up. So the next stage is the hard work. Can you really translate it into a piece of sculpture?”

And this delicious nugget:

“If the writer doesn’t sit at the computer every day,” he points out. “The muse is not going to visit.”

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