In Tradition and the Individual Talent T.S. Eliot discusses the idea that as writers our writings will always be influenced by the past, by writers who has gone before us. We cannot ever be separated from them. This is actually true for everyone now just writers. We are defined by our families, by the places we live, by the history that defines those places and so on and so forth to end simply with we are always influenced in different ways by the entirety of the world. Reading poetry shapes what we think is good and bad poetry. This in turn influences what we write. We are building on the legacy on the traditions that have come before us.
He also argues that writing should be an impersonal endeavor, not connected with any emotional state, but simply a means to reorganize and restructure the way the world is viewed in its relation to history. Honestly, I don’t quiet grasp this idea simply because almost every piece I write is connected to my emotions in some way. Obviously there can be some separation, but I’m not sure I could ever write without my emotions. In fact I would consider it a lower level of writing to keep all my emotions out, as if it would make words dry and brittle.