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Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace

by

Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace Cover

ISBN13: 9780307592439
ISBN10: 030759243x
All Product Details

 

Review-A-Day

"Looking back over Wallace's corpus, you notice plenty of heartbreaking observations and nods to the depression that would ultimately claim his life. We owe it to ourselves not to ignore those — Wallace's writing illuminates the painful truth that life can be unbearable." Michael O'Donnell, Washington Monthly (Read the entire Washington Monthly review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"If you can think of times in your life that you've treated people with extraordinary decency and love, and pure uninterested concern, just because they were valuable as human beings. The ability to do that with ourselves. To treat ourselves the way we would treat a really good, precious friend. Or a tiny child of ours that we absolutely loved more than life itself. And I think it's probably possible to achieve that. I think part of the job we're here for is to learn how to do it. I know that sounds a little pious." David Foster Wallace

An indelible portrait of David Foster Wallace, by turns funny and inspiring, based on a five-day trip with award-winning writer David Lipsky during Wallace's Infinite Jest tour.

In David Lipsky's view, David Foster Wallace was the best young writer in America. Wallace's pieces for Harper's magazine in the '90s were, according to Lipsky, "like hearing for the first time the brain voice of everybody I knew: Here was how we all talked, experienced, thought. It was like smelling the damp in the air, seeing the first flash from a storm a mile away. You knew something gigantic was coming."

Then Rolling Stone sent Lipsky to join Wallace on the last leg of his book tour for Infinite Jest, the novel that made him internationally famous. They lose to each other at chess. They get iced-in at an airport. They dash to Chicago to catch a make-up flight. They endure a terrible reader's escort in Minneapolis. Wallace does a reading, a signing, an NPR appearance. Wallace gives in and imbibes titanic amounts of hotel television (what he calls an"orgy of spectation"). They fly back to Illinois, drive home, walk Wallace's dogs. Amid these everyday events, Wallace tells Lipsky remarkable things — everything he can about his life, how he feels, what he thinks, what terrifies and fascinates and confounds him — in the writing voice Lipsky had come to love. Lipsky took notes, stopped envying him, and came to feel about him — that grateful, awake feeling — the same way he felt about Infinite Jest. Then Lipsky heads to the airport, and Wallace goes to a dance at a Baptist church.

A biography in five days, Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself is David Foster Wallace as few experienced this great American writer. Told in his own words, here is Wallace's own story, and his astonishing, humane, alert way of looking at the world; here are stories of being a young writer — of being young generally — trying to knit together your ideas of who you should be and who other people expect you to be, and of being young in March of 1996. And of what it was like to be with and — as he tells it — what it was like to become David Foster Wallace.

Review:

"Lipsky (Absolutely American, 2003) vividly and incisively sets the before-and-after scenes for this revelatory oral history...Wallace is radiantly present in this intimate portrait, a generous and refined work that will sustain Wallace's masterful and innovative books long into the future." Booklist

Review:

"It's a road picture, a love story, a contest: two talented, brilliant young men with literary ambitions, and their struggle to understand one another." Maria Bustillos, www.theawl.com

Review:

"Exhilarating...All that's left now are the words on the page — and on the pages of Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, too, with the voices they conjure of two writers talking, talking, talking as they drive through the night." Laura Miller, Salon

Synopsis:

An indelible portrait of David Foster Wallace, by turns funny and inspiring, based on a five-day trip with award-winning writer Lipsky during Wallace's Infinite Jest tour.

Synopsis:

US

About the Author

David Lipsky is a contributing editor at Rolling Stone magazine. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper'sMagazine, The Best American Short Stories, The Best American Magazine Writing, The New York Times, The New York Times Book Review, and many other publications. He contributes as an essayist to NPR's All Things Considered, and is the recipient of a Lambert Fellowship, a Media Award from GLAAD, and a National Magazine Award. He's the author of the novel The Art Fair, a collection of stories, Three Thousand Dollars, and the bestselling nonfiction book Absolutely American, which was a Time magazine Best Book of the Year.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 6 comments:

Dennis Miller, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by Dennis Miller)
Further insight into David Foster Wallace is never a bad thing. The road trip takes place back in the mid-90's, at the height of DFW's non-fiction buzz, and, I believe, shortly before the epic Infinite Jest came out. Reading "Although of Course" reminds me to make sure to read all of DFW's works.
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(3 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
meanprofessor, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by meanprofessor)
It's great to hear Wallace's voice, usually lost in footnotes in his own texts, in Lipsky's book.
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(3 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
stepwolfgang, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by stepwolfgang)
David Foster Wallace hung himself after a long battle with depression and the medication he hated to take for the illness. I wanted to read an interview that was off the cuff so to speak and this book seemed to fit this criterion. The book is interesting for what is not said than what is said. The book store readings, the plane trips, the car journeys and the conversations between the authors, David Lipsky with Wallace at his home in Bloomington, Illinois. Lipsky writing the piece for rolling stone magazine is wrapped by Wallace in this mantel of interloper with a tape recorder so conversation spills out, fills the over three hundred page book but what does one learn about Wallace? He has an obsession with TV, he chews tobacco and spits in plastic cups, he sweats a lot, he discovered the on/off switch on Lipsky’s recorder, he loves a pair of large dogs and I found all this interesting but the problem here is that the words does not arrive spontaneously but re-digested through Lipsky the reporter. He so wants the reader to know just how much he worships Wallace (or it seems so to me) and so at times he allows Wallace to stop the recorder at moments where there seemed to be some new thought or disturbing summation near the precipice of chaos. Perhaps Wallace knowing the chaotic thoughts of his mental illness wants needs to block the demons of helter-skelter before they take over his delicate writing instrument which allowed the creation of his oeuvre. On September 12, 2008 the repressed demons (by will or medication) make life unbearable for Wallace but as Lipsky illuminates there were delicate moments of both irony and joy as they traveled together and in the end becoming themselves.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780307592439
Author:
Lipsky, David
Publisher:
Broadway Books
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Biography-Literary
Subject:
non-fiction;biography;memoir;writing;interviews;road trip;literature;1990s;journalism
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20100431
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
9.36x6.16x1.10 in. 1.10 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Biography » Literary
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » World History » General
Young Adult » General

Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace New Trade Paper
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$16.99 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Broadway Books - English 9780307592439 Reviews:
"Review A Day" by , "Looking back over Wallace's corpus, you notice plenty of heartbreaking observations and nods to the depression that would ultimately claim his life. We owe it to ourselves not to ignore those — Wallace's writing illuminates the painful truth that life can be unbearable." (Read the entire Washington Monthly review)
"Review" by , "Lipsky (Absolutely American, 2003) vividly and incisively sets the before-and-after scenes for this revelatory oral history...Wallace is radiantly present in this intimate portrait, a generous and refined work that will sustain Wallace's masterful and innovative books long into the future."
"Review" by , "It's a road picture, a love story, a contest: two talented, brilliant young men with literary ambitions, and their struggle to understand one another."
"Review" by , "Exhilarating...All that's left now are the words on the page — and on the pages of Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, too, with the voices they conjure of two writers talking, talking, talking as they drive through the night."
"Synopsis" by , An indelible portrait of David Foster Wallace, by turns funny and inspiring, based on a five-day trip with award-winning writer Lipsky during Wallace's Infinite Jest tour.
"Synopsis" by , US
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