May 3, 2020 Creativity

Closing The Gap

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 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.” - Ira Glass

When I first read this quote from Ira Glass I felt a sense of relief.

A lot of projects, ideas, and things that I create fail to meet my expectations. It becomes really discouraging, and often the feeling would drive me away from pursuing that endeavor any further.

Closing the gap in any domain takes immeasurable amounts of time, effort, and failure.

Realizing that it’s okay to make things that suck will push you closer to creating something that doesn’t.


Previous post
Read → Think → Write. Reading leads me to thinking. Thinking leads me to writing. Writing creates something that can be read. Repeat. Writing publicly scared me at first.
Next post
Awe-Inspiring Photographs Have you ever encountered a photograph that left you in awe? You get emotional chills looking at them, admiring their details, and reflecting upon