Inspiration

From Stivale’s notes on L’Abécédaire de Gilles Deleuze:

Again, like so many other activities, for five or ten minutes at most of inspiration, so much preparation is needed. Deleuze says he always liked doing that a lot, preparing a lot in order to reach these moments of inspiration, but the more he continued, the longer he had to prepare only to have his inspiration progressively reduced. 

The ‘preparation’ here is of Deleuze’s courses. I think everyone has some sense of what inspiration, in terms of having experienced it, especially the people I know who always seem to be inspired about something or an other (maybe it is just the blog format?), but what the hell is inspiration?

I am thinking about inspiration because I feeling less than inspired about something I need to write for tomorrow. I have the information in front of me on the computer regarding what I need to write about but it is so not inspiring. (Is this what it means to have a normal job? To force one’s self to act out as if one was inspired about something? To capture inspiration, to produce a political economy of inspiration, is this a version of Weber’s charismatic governance?)

What is interesting about Deleuze’s comment is that he frames inspiration as being the result of preparation. It bucks the whimsical pop culture notion of being struck by inspiration as if it were lightning. In some ways it is similar to his call for ‘sober experimention’.

The use of the term ‘moment’ by Stivale I think probably means that Deleuze used a term to denote a certain temporality to inspiration. Is it something like the affect of excitement, but of the future, the to-come, thus affect mingled with anticipation, a superposition? An affective superposition of a future yet-to-come that heralds this becomnig-future. So is it something like a socio-temporal lubricant!! But inspiration couldn’t only be about excitement. We get that from the spectacle…