04 March 2009

Long Day's Journey: David Foster Wallace piece in The New Yorker

If you page back through this blog you will find an entry on David Foster Wallace, who committed suicide in September last year. You'll also notice it knocked me off the rails enough to stop blogging for awhile.

Now comes an article titled "The Unfinished" outlining Foster's career and his long battle with depression. It is a sad tale, but not a particularly surprising one. Still, it is compelling for a fan of Foster's work to get some more insight into not only his death, but his writing habits and career. There is also an excerpt from the manuscript Wallace was working on for years prior to his death, "The Pale King".

"The Unfinished" is long, as per TNY standards, but worth the reading. Wallace's battle with depression and his search for a solution are somewhat depressing in themselves--it is not as if those around him weren't aware of his condition. Indeed, his wife and family went to extraordinary lengths to monitor his psychic state.

It is only the more disappointing that Wallace seemed to have found a new style he thought may have been more honest.

The Pale King is to be published later this year.


  1. i'm a little late to the party. when you sent me the links back in january, i didn't realize these were YOUR blogs so i let the e-mail sink to the bottom of the pile.

    i am glad michael set me straight tonight. looks like i have a lot of (great) catching up to do.

    grumpy old man by day, intellectual by night.


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