The Howling Fantods

David Foster Wallace News and Resources Since March 97

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size



Last Updated on Sunday, 13 September 2015 03:05

The Thoughtful Labor of the Wordsmith

Caleb Brooks' piece for Not Mad earlier this week is worth a read, David Foster Wallace, "The End of the Tour", and the Thoughtful Labor of the Wordsmith:

So when I left the theatre that night I did the only thing I knew to do: walk back across the college by the light of a moon that was almost super to the dorm room that was my temporary home and dig out my travel-worn Kindle. I hopped back and forth from Although Of Course You Ended Up Becoming Yourself and Infinite Jest for the next few hours, from the peeling-tape hum of the frozen Illinois interstate captured by voice recorder to the antics of Lenz terrorizing the cat populations around Ennet House. What a pleasure it is to be invited into the deepest wrinkles of someone else’s mind, what a gift it is be reminded that we are really not alone.

Continue reading, David Foster Wallace, "The End of the Tour", and the Thoughtful Labor of the Wordsmith.


The End of the Tour DVD and Blu-ray Nov 3

Here's the DVD/Blu-ray cover for The End of the Tour.

Release is set for November 3, 2015. You can pre-order the DVD or Blu-ray over at Amazon now.


'Litchat' and David Foster Wallace

There's a pretty interesting article by Laura Miller (@magiciansbook also the 1996 DFW Interview) over at The New Yorker today, David Foster Wallace and the Perils of “Litchat”.

I think Miller makes some interesting observations about the role of 'Litchat' in defining the reception of an author. But I also reacted negatively to the representation (stereotype?) of Wallace fans/enthusiasts etc, but then again, I am a 40 year old white male. Hmmm...

This stuff—let’s call it litchat—may be ephemeral, but it absolutely shapes the formal reception of a writer’s work. If everyone in your M.F.A. workshop or the last book party you went to mentions an established author’s name with reverence, you’ll be that much more likely to lay it on thick should you ever be asked to review her new book. Or, conversely, if you decide to prove your independence of mind and go contrarian on her, you’ll be aware of the inertia of all that acclaim and feel the imperative to push back with corresponding force. Reviewers don’t like to admit that they’re influenced by such factors, but unless they live cut off from other readers, writers, and critics entirely, they can’t really help it.

Continue reading David Foster Wallace and the Perils of “Litchat” here.

Last Updated on Thursday, 10 September 2015 08:12

Infinite Jest 20th Anniversary Cover Comp

Edit 3/12/15: Yes, the cover comp information disappeared from the official page a long time ago. If you're keen on seeing what has been submitted, Chris Ayers is collecting and showcasing entries for the official Infinite Jest Cover Competition on his incredible Poor Yorick Entertainment blog and Facebook page.

Chris has asked for anyone who may have submitted an entry to the comp to contact him via the blog or facebook page so he can showcase as many entries as possible.


Bump! Cover comp for the Deluxe Edition of Infinite Jest closes September 15th if you are considering entering.

Has it really been almost 20 years since Infinite Jest was published!? Check out the exciting competition announcement from Little, Brown. Great opportunity, but limited to US entrants only :(


Little, Brown and Company Announces Cover Art Contest for Infinite Jest 20th Anniversary Edition.

August 13, 2015, NEW YORK, NY – It was announced today that Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, will sponsor a cover art contest for the forthcoming 20th anniversary edition of David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest. Fans are invited to submit a piece of original artwork appropriate for a book cover that is inspired by the literary phenomenon Infinite Jest. Submissions will be accepted at between August 15th and September 15th, 2015. The winning book cover is to be selected by the Wallace Literary Trust, in cooperation with David Foster Wallace’s longtime publisher Little, Brown and Company. The winner will receive an American Express® gift card for $1000 and the opportunity for his/her cover art to be featured on the 20th anniversary edition of Infinite Jest, which Back Bay Books will publish on February 23, 2016. You can see the Official Rules at for details, and visit the book’s dedicated Tumblr link at for periodic updates regarding the contest artwork and the book’s anniversary celebrations.

“The anniversary of a novel as influential, beloved, and enduring as Infinite Jest is cause for much celebration. To mark the twentieth anniversary, we invite the readers whose enthusiasm for and engagement with Infinite Jest has shaped the book’s legacy to share their inspiration with us, and celebrate with us in this very special way,” says Hachette CEO and the editor of Infinite Jest, Michael Pietsch.

Often considered Wallace’s greatest work, Infinite Jest explores essential questions about what entertainment is and why it has come to so dominate our lives; about how our desire for entertainment affects our need to connect with other people; and about what the pleasures we choose say about who we are. Published in 1996 to critical and popular acclaim, and marking the confirmation of Wallace as a literary genius, the book is an exuberant, uniquely American exploration of the passions that make us human - and one of those rare books that renew the idea of what a novel can do.

Submission guidelines can be found online at Entries will be judged on originality and creativity, relevance to the book and its impact on the literary landscape, and other criteria.
Last Updated on Thursday, 03 December 2015 08:29

DFW on Michael Feldman's Whad'Ya Know?

The audio of this call-in appearance/interview from April 1997 popped up recently online via Michael Feldman's Whad'Ya Know? Facebook page. The audio can be found on the Whad'Ya Know podcast Soundcloud page.

The exchange between Feldman and Wallace is quite entertaining, particularly when Wallace tries to pull a couple of jokes live on air. There is still a transcript available on what was one of the very first Wallace websites, Bob Wake's, "Infinite Jest: Reviews, Articles, and Miscellany".


For more David Foster Wallace interviews check out the huge collection right here.

Last Updated on Thursday, 10 September 2015 08:09

A Supposedly Fun Show - Tickets on Sale Today

Update: Additional shows, reviews and radio appearance.

Five additional shows added! Tickets here. September 13, 16, 18, 20, 22. Congratulation, Christopher.

Christopher (@theduvaverse) also appeared on the recent radio show, Connections: Legacy and Impact of David Foster Wallace, discussing the development of his show and DFW. (Alternate link)

(Photo - Suzanne Weber)




Tickets for Christopher Duva's NYC International Fringe Festival (August 2015) stage adaptation of DFW's essay, A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again, go on sale today!

5 Shows only!

Everything you need to know about the show can be found via the links at the end, but I wanted to know more so I asked Chris to tell me a little more about the show and how it came to be.

Over to Chris:

My parents dragged me on cruise ships when I was a child. They now continually ask to drag my daughter on cruise ships. In fact, as I write this, my parents are on a cruise ship. Since they retired, this is seldom not the case.

A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again is the first DFW piece I ever read. It was January 1996 and I was newly dating my now wife and the mother of my aforementioned daughter, Suzanne Weber (who is directing the show). She knew DFW socially through Amherst Alumni events and knowing my tortured cruise-ship past, suggested I read DFW’s Harpers piece, “Shipping Out”. I felt like someone had mined my brain and turned every random thought I’d ever had about the experience into gold. The next month, Infinite Jest came out. I’ve been devouring DFW’s writing ever since.

Later, I corresponded with DFW about possibly adapting his collection Brief Interviews with Hideous Men for the stage. He gave me his blessing but wasn’t aware at the time that the rights were already tied up with a film option. DFW referred me to Bonnie Nadell who handled these things for him, and she let me down easy. Then, about two years ago I came across DFW’s letter and it felt like unfinished business. Suddenly it hit me that the piece I should really be adapting for the stage was A Supposedly Fun Thing… because I have always felt so personally connected to it. I wrote to Bonnie to see if the rights were available. They were and so I drew up a proposal. After some months of back-and-forth, she and DFW’s widow, Karen Green, generously gave me permission through the David Foster Wallace Literary Trust to adapt the essay.

It’s been tremendous working so closely on this piece, as well as horrifying realizing the amount of great material I’d have to cut. I’m hoping that the FringeNYC run will lead to future productions. But, at this point it’s only these 5 shows in New York!


Thanks, Chris. I hope some of you can make it and support the show. I know I'd be going if I didn't live on the other side of the world. - Nick

Twitter: @asupposedlyfun -
Last Updated on Thursday, 10 September 2015 08:12
More Articles...

The Howling Fantods