In Stafford’s essay “A Way of Writing,” he claims that “receptivity” and “a willingness to fail” are key components to his writing process. Being receptive means that you are willing to receive something, in Stafford’s case, it is ideas and or someone else’s knowledge. If you are receptive towards others’ comments and ideas, it will only help you as a writer and give you more perspective and a different angle. A willingness to fail means that you are accepting of failure and you are aware that sometimes, you just can’t win. Having willingness to fail as a writer means that you understand that not every piece of work will be perfected and completed.
These two elements are vital to Stafford’s writing process because when put together, they form an elaborate and specific way of writing. These components make a writers job easier, for example, when you have a moment of writers block and need some insight, your receptivity will guide you to get some understanding from a good friend or a peer. On an occasion where a friend or peer can’t help you and you become permanently stuck in a block, that’s when you figure out if you have a willingness to fail or not. When a writer has a willingness to fail in his head; it doesn’t mean he is a careless writer. This willingness makes Stafford a better writer, knowing that he cannot always succeed.
Being a successful writer means that you will go through ups and downs and not every piece will be perfection. Having a positive outlook on yourself and your writing and keeping an open mind will help you especially when it comes to finding out yourself as a writer and how you can improve your writing style. The style that William Stafford has developed is brilliant and if all of the writers in the world followed his writing process, it would impact their progress greatly as individual writers.