Monday, December 16, 2013

The Creative Process & Ira Glass

In my recent self-reflections and research on creativity and imagination, I found these words of wisdom from public radio personality Ira Glass:
“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 it's 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 story. 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.”
Let's highlight some of that again:
"...the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work..."
I love that. He's honest: creativity takes work, and it's okay (more than okay--it's normal) for your output to take its time becoming as good as your vision for it. That's what I'm doing here, what I'm trying to do here--a lot of work. I want this to be a years-long portfolio of my creative work. It's not everything, and it's not all that great, but it's my attempt at closing the gap.

(if you prefer to listen to Ira as he breaks it down):

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