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Uncollected DFW

Update: Check out Wendy Liu's, The complete works of David Foster Wallace, as a MASSIVE update to the material below. Well worth your time to consult Wendy's site. (Updated 1st Sep 2017)

Please Note: Links with a strike through have been happily removed at the request of Little Brown and David Foster Wallace's estate - December 2012.

(Big thank you to Matt Hale who used to help maintain this page. Thanks, Matt. In addition, thanks to Rob who let picked up some small important errors and pointed out the existence of 'Adventures in Regret IV'.
If you wish to contact me, Nick, please use the contact page.

The goal of this page is to provide an easy to navigate resource for the DFW fan who has read his collections and wants to know what else he has published. DFW made a habit of renaming pieces and publishing excerpts under various titles, and so navigating a complete bibliography can prove pretty daunting. This page is here to cut through the clutter.

Read "The Broom of the System", "Girl With Curious Hair", "Infinite Jest", "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never do Again", "Signifying Rappers", "Brief Interviews with Hideous Men", "Everything and More: a Compact History of Infinity", "Oblivion", "Consider the Lobster", "Fate, Time, and Language: An Essay on Free Will", "The Pale King", "Both Flesh and Not" and the selections in the "Uncollected Fiction", "Uncollected Essays" and "Uncollected Book Reviews" sections below and you will (to the best of my knowledge) have read the most definitive version of everything.*
This page would not have been possible without the DFW Bibliography found elsewhere on this site and Ryan's nearly overwhelmingly exhaustive BibTex DFW Bibliography.

"The Enema Bandit and the Cosmic Buzzer". Container 27.9 Harry Ransom Centre DFW Archive.

"The Planet Trillaphon as It Stands in Relation to the Bad Thing". Amherst Review, 1984. Tin House #40; Oct 1, 2009. Container 29.8 Harry Ransom Centre DFW Archive. [NOTES: This is the earliest known published work by DFW (his Junior year at Amherst). In 2009, it was reprinted in Tin House #40. Read the first paragraph here.]

"The Piano in the Pantechnicon". The Allegheny Review, 1984. Container 29.7 Harry Ransom Centre DFW Archive.

"Solomon Silverfish". Sonora Review no. 16, Fall 1987. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Crash of '69". Between C & D, Winter 1989. [NOTES: Between C & D was an experimental literary magazine literally printed on circa 1989 dot matrix printer-paper and sold in a plastic bag. Finding a copy of "Crash of '69" (in any shape) took work and many thanks go out to those who tracked it down. That being said, it was kind of a mess. A lovingly restored copy is available here. Originally titled - "Crash of '62", typescripts, undated (University of Arizona essay) Container 27.2 Harry Ransom Centre DFW Archive.

"Order and Flux in Northampton". Conjunctions No. 17, Fall 1991. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Rabbit Resurrected". Harper's Magazine, August 1992. [NOTES: This is from a series of stories Harper's published called "To be continued.... (sequels to famous literary works)." DFW's contribution is a sequel to John Updike's "Rabbit at Rest". Read it here.]

"The Fifth Column--A Novel: Week Eleven". The Village Voice Vol. 41, No. 7; Feb 13, 1996; p. 50. [NOTES: This is from an exquisite corpse (a story written by several authors in which each author will start from where the previous had left off and then pass it on to the next) by Jonathan Frazen, Rick Moody, A.M. Homes, DFW and others. It was published over fifteen weeks (a different author each week) in The Village Voice. DFW did week eleven. The complete "novel" was compiled in the March 26, 1996 issue of The Village Voice in abridged form. All fifteen original parts are available here.]

"The Flexicon". Parnassus: Poetry in Review Vol. 23 Nos. 1 & 2, 1998; pp. 180-194. [NOTES: 'An homage to the lexical richness of English' with contributions by Albert Goldbarth, Paul West, Diane Ackerman, DFW and others. Read it here. DFW's contribution is pp. 183-188.]

"Brief Interviews with Hideous Men". Harper's Magazine Vol. 297, Iss. 1781; Oct. 1998; pp. 41-56. [NOTES: This mini collection includes B.I. #16, #14, #3, #42, #30, #48, #28, and #51. The only B.I. not subsequently collected in the eponymous book is #16. Read it here.] The Harper's version is available here.

"All That". The New Yorker; December, 2009. [NOTES: When this was originally published, it was confirmed to Nick, to be an excerpt from "The Pale King" but, finally, it did not make it into the novel. Read it here.]

"Matters of Sense and Opacity". New York Times; August 2, 1987. [NOTES: This is a short letter to the editor. Read it here.]
"Other Math". Western Humanities Review, Summer 1987. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Fictional Futures and the Conspicuously Young". The Review of Contemporary Fiction Vol. 8, No. 3, 1988. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"The Empty Plenum: David Markson's 'Wittgenstein's Mistress'". The Review of Contemporary Fiction Vol. 10, Iss. 2; Summer 1990; p. 217. [NOTES: A major work. I had this in the Book Reviews section for a long time but it really is far more than a review. Read it here.]

"Democracy and Commerce at the U.S. Open". New York Times; Aug 25, 1996. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Hail The Returning Dragon, Clothed In New Fire" in the anthology "Shiny Adidas Tracksuits and the Death of Camp and Other Essays from Might Magazine"; 1998. (Originally published as "Impediments to Passion" in the November/December 1996 issue of Might Magazine.) [NOTES: Read the "Shiny Adidas Tracksuits" version here.]

"Quo Vadis - Introduction". The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Spring 1996. [NOTES: The Spring 1996 issue of The Review of Contemporary Fiction was titled "The Future of Fiction: A Forum Edited by David Foster Wallace" and featured essays by Sven Birkerts, Mary Caponegro, Jonathan Franzen, William T. Vollmann and others. This was DFW's introduction to the forum and is available here.]

"God Bless You, Mr. Franzen". Harper's Magazine, Sep. 1996; p. 9. [NOTES: This is a letter to the editor and it is available here.]

"The Nature of the Fun". Fiction Writer Magazine, September 1998. (Reprinted in the anthology 'Why I Write: Thoughts on the Craft of Fiction', ed. Will Blythe.) [NOTES: Read it here.]

"F/X Porn". Waterstone's Magazine, Winter/Spring 1998. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Overlooked: Five Direly Underappreciated U.S. Novels >1960".; Apr. 12, 1999. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"100-word statement". Rolling Stone No. 830/831; Dec. 30, 1999-January 6, 2000; p. 125. [NOTES: In their "Party 2000" issue, Rolling Stone asked several notable types to comment on the then-coming 'millennium'. DFW's contribution is available here and is actually 209 words long.]

"The Oxford American Writer's Thesaurus". Compiled by Christine A. Lindberg. Oxford University Press; October, 2004. [NOTES: This is an actual (1100-page plus) thesaurus for writers. Scattered throughout are 'Word Notes' wherein various authors, DFW among them, discuss usage and that forever quest for the perfect word. Read selections featuring DFW here.]

"Kenyon Commencement Address". Transcription of the 2005 Kenyon Commencement Address given by DFW May 21, 2005. [NOTES: Read a transcript here. This was also adapted and slightly expanded (well, expanded and contracted -- there's stuff included in the speech transcript missing from the published version and vice versa) and published in "The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2006," which version can be found here and then as a stand-alone book under the title "This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, about Living a Compassionate Life" (which if the link to the transcript no longer works, this publication is why).]

"Federer as Religious Experience". New York Times; August 20, 2006. [NOTES: Read it here. NYT Play]

"Deciderization 2007 — a Special Report". Introduction to "The Best American Essays 2007" anthology. [NOTES: DFW was editor of the 2007 edition of "The Best American Essays". This was his introduction and it can be read here.]

"Just Asking". The Atlantic Monthly, November 2007. [NOTES: DFW's contribution to The Atlantic Monthly's "The Future of the American Idea" issue. Read a transcript here.]


"The Horror of Pretentiousness: 'The Great and Secret Show' by Clive Barker". The Washington Post; Feb. 19, 1990. [NOTES: Read it here.]

Michael Martone's "Fort Wayne Is Seventh on Hitler's List". ERATO/Harvard Book Review, Spring 1990. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Exploring Inner Space: 'War Fever' by J.G. Ballard". The Washington Post; Apr. 28, 1991. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"The Million-Dollar Tattoo: 'Laura's Skin' by F. J. Fiederspiel". New York Times Book Review, April 1991. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Tragic Cuban Emigre and a Tale of 'The Door to Happiness': 'The Doorman' by Reinaldo Arenas". The Philadelphia Inquirer Book Review; July 14, 1991. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Presley As Paradigm: 'Dead Elvis: A Chronicle of Cultural Obsession' by Greil Marcus". Los Angeles Times; Nov 24, 1991. [NOTES: Read it here.]

Kathy Acker's "Portrait of an Eye: Three Novels". Harvard Review, Spring 1992. [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Iris' Story: An Inversion Of Philosophical Skepticism: 'The Blindfold' by Siri Hustvedt". The Philadelphia Inquirer; May 24, 1992; p. M2. (Also published in Contemporary Literary Criticism Vol. 76, 1992.) [NOTES: Read it here.]

"Rhetoric and the Math Melodrama: Philibert Schogt's 'The Wild Numbers' & Apostolos Doxiadis' 'Uncle Petros & Goldbach's Conjecture'". Science, December 22, 2000. [NOTES: This was fairly heavily edited by Science but the original manuscript (along with an interesting reader response and DFW's response to that response) is available here. The published (abridged) version is here.]

"The Best of the Prose Poem: An International Journal", ed. Peter Johnson. Rain Taxi Vol. 6, No. 1; Spring 2001; pp. 22-24. [NOTES: DFW creates a new genre of book review. Read it here.]

"Borges on the Couch: 'Borges: A Life' by Edwin Williamson". New York Times Book Review; November 7, 2004. [NOTES: Read it here (Edwin Willimson was not too impressed by DFW's opinion and lets the NYT know here).]


[NOTES on this section: Some of these pieces were altered quite radically (usually expanded) in their collected form while some are pretty much identical in every way but title. I consider the versions in DFW's collections to be definitive. Also, this is probably self-explanatory but: GWCH="Girl with Curious Hair", IJ="Infinite Jest", ASFT="A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again", BIWHM="Brief Interviews with Hideous Men", CtL="Consider the Lobster", and TPK="The Pale King".]

"Richard Taylor's 'Fatalism' and the Semantics of Physical Modality". Department of Philosophy of Amherst College; March 22, 1985. [NOTES: This is DFW's Philosophy Thesis, decidedly not written for laymen. Collected in "Fate, Time, and Language: An Essay on Free Will ".]

"Mr. Costigan in May". Clarion, Spring 1985. [NOTES: An earlier form of a part of what became "The Broom of The System".]

"Inside". The Amherst Review, Volume XIII, 1985. [NOTES: An earlier form of a part of what became "The Broom of The System".]

"Late Night". Playboy, June 1988. [NOTES: Collected in GWCH as "My Appearance". Link to Playboy site - SFW part but still - here.]

"H.L. Hix's 'Morte d'Author: An Autopsy'". ERATO/Harvard Book Review, Spring 1991. [NOTES: Collected in ASFT as "Greatly Exaggerated".]

"Tennis, Trigonometry, Tornadoes: A Midwestern Boyhood". Harper's Magazine Vol. 283, No. 1699; Dec. 1991. [NOTES: Collected in ASFT as "Derivative Sport in Tornado Alley".] The Harper's version is available here.

"Three Protrusions". Grand Street Vol. 11, No. 2; Spring 1992. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"Tracy Austin's 'Beyond Center Court: My Story'". Philadelphia Inquirer; Aug. 30, 1992. [NOTES: Collected in CtL as "How Tracy Austin Broke My Heart".]

"From Quite a Bit Longer Thing in Progress". Conjunctions No. 20; 1993. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"From 'Infinite Jest'". The Review of Contemporary Fiction Vol. 13, No. 2; Summer 1993; p. 195. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"The Awakening of My Interest in Annular Systems". Harper's Magazine Vol. 287, No. 1720; Sep. 1993; p. 60. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.] The Harper's version is available here.

"It Was a Great Marvel That He Was in the Father Without Knowing Him (I)". The Iowa Review Vol. 24, No. 2; 1994. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"It Was a Great Marvel That He Was in the Father Without Knowing Him (II)". The Iowa Review Vol. 24, No. 2; 1994. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"Several Birds". The New Yorker; June 27, 1994. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"Ticket to the Fair". Harper's Magazine Vol. 289, No. 1730; July 1994; p. 35. [NOTES: Collected in ASFT as "Getting Away from Pretty Much Being Away From it All".] The Harper's version is available here.
"An Interval". The New Yorker; Jan. 30, 1995. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"Adventures in Regret IV". Los Angeles Times; June 4 1995 [NOTES: IJ excerpt.] Earlier version than High Regret Ink below?

"Feodor's Guide". The Village Voice; Apr. 9, 1996. [NOTES: Collected in CtL as "Joseph Frank's Dostoevsky".]

"Shipping Out: On the (Nearly Lethal) Comforts of a Luxury Cruise". Harper's Magazine Vol. 292, No. 1748; Jan. 1996. [NOTES: Collected in ASFT as "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again".] The Harper's version is available here.

"High Regret Ink". Puncture No. 35, Spring 1996. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"Chivalry". Grand Street Vol. 55, No. 3; Winter 1996. [NOTES: IJ excerpt.]

"The String Theory". Esquire Vol. 126, No. 1; July 1996; p. 56. [NOTES: Collected in ASFT as "Tennis Player Michael Joyce's Prfoessional Artistry as a Paradigm of Certain Stuff about Choice, Freedom, Discipline, Joy, Grotesquerie, and Human Completeness".]

"Passion, Digitally". New York Times Magazine; Sep. 29, 1996. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as "Datum Centurio". This was published along with several other stories (A.M. Homes' "Love is All You'll Need" and David Ives' "Da Going Out Guide" among them) loosely connected by the topic of romance in the year 2096.]

"Nothing Happened". Open City No. 5, 1997. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as "Signifying Nothing".]

"Pop Quiz". spelunker flophouse Vol. 1, No. 4, 1997. [NOTES: Collected (in expanded form and with different numbering for the Pop Quizzes) in BIWHM as "Octet."]

"Yet Another Instance of the Porousness of Certain Borders (XXI)". Conjunctions No. 28, Spring 1997. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as, confusingly enough, "Yet Another Example of the Porousness of Certain Borders (XI)". The full text can be found on Conjunctions' website (here) and it does indeed match 'XI' in BIWHM (could that extra X be a typo at, maybe?).]

"from Brief Interviews with Hideous Men". The Paris Review Vol. 39, Fall 1997. [NOTES: Here's another slightly confusing one. This was collected in BIWHM as B.I. #20. In The Paris Review, however, it was published with the subtitle, "#6: E_____ on 'How and Why I Have Come to be Totally Devoted to S_____ and Have Made Her the Linchpin and Plinth of My Entire Emotional Existence'".]

"John Updike, Champion Literary Phallcrat, Drops One: Is This Finally the End for the Magnificent Narcissists?". The New York Observer; Oct. 13, 1997. [This was collected in CtL as "Certainly the End of Something or Other, One Would Sort of Have to Think".]

"Self-Harm as a Sort of Offering". Mid-American Review No. 18, Spring 1998. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as "Suicide as a Kind of Present".]

"Laughing with Kafka". Harper's Magazine Vol. 297, No. 1778; July 1998; p. 23. [NOTES: Collected in CtL as "Some Remarks on Kafka's Funniness from Which Probably Not Enough Has Been Removed".]

"Neither Adult Nor Entertainment". Premiere, Sept. 11, 1998. [NOTES: Collected in CtL as "Big Red Son".]

"Yet Another Instance of the Porousness of Certain Borders (VIII)". McSweeney's Quarerly Concern No. 1, Autumn 1998. [NOTES: Subsequently collected with the same title in the anthology "The Better of McSweeney's" and, finally, in DFW's "Oblivion" as "Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature".]

"Yet Another Instance of the Porousness of Certain Borders (XII)". Esquire, Nov. 1998. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as "The Devil is a Busy Man" (the one beginning, "Plus when he got something that was new or if he cleaned out the machine shed...").]

"Another Example of the Porousness of Various Borders (VI): Projected But Not Improbably Transcript of Author's Parents' Marriage's End, 1971". Printed on the spine of McSweeney's Quarerly Concern No. 3, Late Summer, Early Fall 1999. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as "Yet Another Example of the Porousness of Certain Borders (VI): Reconstructed Transcript of Mr. Walter D. ('Walt') DeLasandro Jr.'s Parents' Marriage's End, May 1956".]

"Asset". The New Yorker Vol. 75, No. 16; June 21, 1999; p. 93. [NOTES: Collected in BIWHM as B.I. #40.]

"The Weasel, Twelve Monkies, and the Shrub". Rolling Stone No. 838; April 13, 2000; p. 53. [NOTES: Collected, in wildly extended form, in CtL as "Up Simba" and then as a stand-alone book under the title "McCain's Promise: Aboard the Straight Talk Express with John McCain and a Whole Bunch of Actual Reporters, Thinking About Hope".]

"Tense Present: Democracy, English, and the Wars over Usage". Harper's Magazine Vol. 302, No. 1811; p. 39. [NOTES: Collected in CtL as "Authority and American Usage".] The Harper's version is available here.

"Three Fragments from a Longer Thing". Lannan Readings & Conversations; Dec. 6, 2000. [NOTES: In December of 2000, DFW read two sections of TPK.  At the time, he referred to them as 'fragments' which he said were from a longer thing. Listen to the reading here .]

"Peoria (4)". TriQuarterly #112, June 2002. [NOTES: TPK excerpt. Read it here.]

"Peoria (9) 'Whispering Pines'". TriQuarterly #112, June 2002. [NOTES: TPK excerpt. Read it here.]

"Year of Glad". "Love Stories: A Literary Companion to Tennis", ed. A. Sexton; Citadel Press, 2003. [NOTES: This is an IJ excerpt in an anthology.]

"Good People". The New Yorker; Feb 5, 2007. [NOTES: TPK excerpt. Read it here.]

"The Compliance Branch". Harper's Magazine, Feb. 2008. [NOTES: TPK excerpt. Originally presented at a reading for le conversazioni on Feb. 7, 2006 as "Untitled Excerpt from Something Longer That Isn't Even Close to Halfway Finished Yet." This version was printed and distributed in a booklet, available here. The Harper's version is available here.]

"Wiggle Room". The New Yorker; March 9, 2009. [NOTES: TPK excerpt. Read it here.]

"Irrelevant Bob". The New Yorker, WEB ONLY; March 9, 2009. [NOTES: TPK excerpt. A fragment presented as two scanned pages of annotated manuscript. Read it here.]

"A New Examiner". The Lifted Brow; Jan 2010. Harper's; Sep 2010. [NOTES: TPK excerpt.]

"Backbone". The New Yorker; Mar 7, 2011. [NOTES: TPK excerpt.]

(Big thank you to Matt Hale who used to help maintain this page. Thanks, Matt. If you wish to contact me, Nick, please use the contact page.)
Please Note: Links with a strike through have been happily removed at the request of Little Brown and David Foster Wallace's estate - December 2012.

*After the devastating news, this word "everything" suddenly takes on an unintentional weight.  "Everything" used to imply "so far," but now...

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 September 2017 16:02  

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