Where do good ideas come from?

If you’re a new reader here, you might wonder why I’m not posting here as regularly as I used to.  There are several reasons.  First, I’ve just finished my first term of full-time teaching, and I’ve been spending a lot of time working on ideas with the students in my seminars.  Second, and perhaps because of this, I’m feeling like a lot of my ideas are wearing out.  Rereading posts from a few years ago, I recognize shapes of big ideas that are still sailing through my consciousness.  I still think they’re good.  I just don’t know that I have all that many new ones.

I’ve been wondering this for years:  do we only get one (or two) really good, big ideas in our lives?  Where do they come from?  What do you do when your ideas run out?