I love this video of Ira Glass, host of This American Life, talking about how your best work comes from doing your craft over and over. 20% will be great work and 80% will be crap. The 20% will make the rest of it worth it. While this video is part of a four-part series, I found this segment to be the most interesting:
I particularly like the part on being ruthless to get rid of a lot of material. I think this is where the saying, "Murder your darlings" comes from. Lately, I've been writing a lot, but only a small portion gets published on this blog or my other blogs. I'm exercising my writing muscles, after letting them atrophy over the last year. It reminds me of a wonderful book, Do the Work by Steven Pressfield, that is all about conquering resistance and the need to be perfect.
I also like Glass's point about making your work equal to the level of your taste. In the early days, and maybe long after the early days, there is a gap. You have to keep doing your craft in order to close the gap. Honestly, I hope my aspirations are always higher than my skill level, so that I have something to strive for.