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initial rapture

Original of Laura Chip Kidd Jacket

Original of Laura , Jacket designed by Chip Kidd

+ WNYC: Brian Boyd and Chipp Kidd, discuss Nabokov, The Original of Laura, as part of "A Celebration of Vladimir Nabokov."

"Inspiration," Nabokov split this old-fashioned word into two Russian parts. The first half of inspiration, for him, is vorstog (initial rapture). Vorstog describes that moment in which the book as a whole is conceived:

A combined sensation of having the whole universe entering you and of yourseld wholle dissolving in the universe surrounding you. It is the prison wall of the ego suddenly crumbling away and the non-ego rushing in from the outside to save the prisioner --who is already dancing in the open.
Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays by Zadie Smith