Closing The Gap: Words of Wisdom from Ira Glass

by Elissa Bedwell

I wanted to share this amazing bit of inspiration (hat tip to the amazing and talented Doc Waller) from one of my favorite people in the world of radio, Ira Glass, producer and host of NPR’s “This American Life“.

Ira Glass

“It’s hard to make something that’s interesting. It’s really, really hard. It’s like a law of nature, a law of aerodynamics, that anything that’s written or anything that’s created wants to be mediocre. The natural state of all writing is mediocrity… So what it takes to make anything more than mediocre is such an act of will…” – Ira Glass

“What nobody tells people who are beginners…is that all of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste…But there is this gap…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…It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”

So don’t fear the gap and fill it with self-criticism, self-doubt and self-disappointment.

Instead, dig deep and find your inner reservoir of inspiration, and make and do and create until your well is dry. Then find a way to recharge your battery (whether it be in isolated self-reflection or by connecting with other people who help replenish your spirit) and get back out there and do it all over again.

Being creative and producing what is in your heart is a battle, but it’s less of a fight of you against the world, and more of a fight of you against yourself.

The rest of Ira’s thoughts on creativity have been turned into a nice little motion graphics video which is below.

No go forth and create!