On April 22, 2011, writing for the New York Times, David Orr used recent work of Matthew Zapruder and Rachel Wetzsteon to illustrate "How Poets Achieve Their Styles":
The achievement of a style is like the achievement of an individual poem writ large: it’s a delicate balance of confidence and guesswork, as the writer simultaneously relies on what’s worked in the past, bets on what might work right now and tries to leave a little room for things that might work in the future. .... Some poets manage the feat in their first books (Bishop), others take a couple of outings to get things right (Larkin) and still others pass through multiple styles over the courses of long careers (Yeats, Auden). The process is fascinatingly byzantine, but it’s not really a matter of “divine prompting”; rather, a poet arrives at a style through the same combination of staggering labor and jolts of luck that most complex activities depend on.
The latter idea echoes the theory Malcolm Gladwell espoused in his book Outliers: The Story of Success -- or at least the "staggering labor" part of it.