David Sosnowski

rapture origin story, part 2

October 25, 2011

Tags: rapture, writing, ideas, inspiration, ragdale

OK, so I wrote a short story about a junky sprouting wings, called it “Fix,” got it published, and got a pretty good reaction whenever I read it in public. Then what? Well, I got to thinking: what if I expanded the story by having the "wing thing" happen to more people? How would that change, well, everything? And so I started thinking about the implications, one of which was, whatever I came up with would probably have to be a novel. The only problem was, I really didn’t feel ready to write a whole novel. Short stories were what I had time for, and so I kept writing them and getting them rejected, all the while thinking that one of these days, I’d have to write that novel about people sprouting wings.

Fast forward to the New Years Eve just before the beginning of 1993. I was at a party with some friends, talking about what we’d like to do in the coming year. I decided to mention my idea for a novel about people sprouting wings and the folks around me freaked and started brainstorming all sorts of implications. It was clear that they like the idea. Luckily, two days later, I was on my way to my first-ever arts colony, called Ragdale, in Lake Forest, Illinois for a two week residency during which I intended to work on a collection of short stories. Except… well, at dinner that first night, as we were introducing ourselves and what we planned to work on, the other fiction writers all seemed to be working on novels. So, just making conversation, I mentioned the idea I’d had for a while about people sprouting… etc. And it was just like New Years Eve all over again: people – including published novelists – freaked, saying among other things that “a publisher would buy that in a heart beat.”

So, I went back to my room and thought, well, if I were to write this novel, how would I start? And the next morning, I started writing the first draft of what I called “The Angel Blues,” and which my publisher eventually called “Rapture.”


Selected Works

novel
"The end of the world is the weirdest time to come of age." --47North
Novel
"A witty, clever, original debut. Sosnowski writes like – well, an angel."
Kirkus Reviews
"Put Anne Rice and Mel Brooks in a blender and you'd get... Vamped."
–Mary Doria Russell

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