Saturday, May 21, 2011

"It's Gonna Take Awhile"

"Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. 
A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. 
Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one [work]. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through." (my emphasis) - Ira Glass
Inspiring words for anyone struggling to refine a skill, craft, or are committed to creative work.

Via NPR. It's an excerpt from a series you can watch on Youtube.

- UPDATE -

After reading this post a friend shared a line he was told when beginning woodworking:
"Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly"
This is a much more quotable wedge to open up the same conversation.

3 comments:

Anna said...

Reminds me of The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.

DK said...

Your the second person to mention this book to me. It is now on hold at the library. :)

Anna said...

Are you sure it's not me who has recommended it twice? :)