Its really very simple. It goes like this:
1 - the more code you write, the more likely there are to be bugs in it.
2 - Inverting (1) we have : the less code you have, the less bugs you have.
3 - When programming, it is good to avoid bugs. Therefore, following (2), write less code.
How to get the job done but write less code? Spend more time in *design*. What is the minimum amount of new (and therefore buggy in unpredictable ways) code you can write to get the job done.
Programming is Haiku, not Victorian Novel.
Yes, its art. But there is a science to the art.
Good programmers write less code. They take the time to ensure they are brief in their code expression.
There is no more important skill in software engineering in my opinion. Its all about the code you *dont* have to write.