Excellent post with suggestions on getting good code out the door.
"* The Way of the Code Samurai *
Now, I don't actually know much about real samurai, but the basic thing I've heard is they stand and stare at each other for hours, and then suddenly BAM strike once and the other guy is down.
That's how you should code."
So I'm not the only one that paces around my cube, sketches on the whiteboard, walks the halls, and thinks for hours and sometimes even days about how to approach a hard problem, until...it's ready. I then sit down, fire up the editor, and go to it.
There's more, too, in that post, which closely align with the coding philosophies and techniques I've successfully used.