My current process is to write a rough draft as quickly as possible, edit it immediately until it says what I think I want it to say, then put it on the shelf for at least a few months (if possible). At that point, I have enough distance to edit it mercilessly, then polish it up and get it ready to send out.
It is such a delight when I take something off the shelf and find that it doesn’t need much in the way of editing. It’s rare, but it does happen. And an even better treat is when I read something I wrote, and set it down with a satisfied sigh, thinking, “What a great story!”
It’s hard to admit to thinking that, but really, if I don’t think it’s a great story, how could I finish writing it in the first place? Writing takes staying power, and trying to force it doesn’t work for me. I have to genuinely love the characters, enjoy the world, and be eager to see how the plot plays out. If any of those pieces are missing, the story will fall flat, and no reader, not even me, will enjoy it.