Bitch, Ph.D. linked to this challenge: finish David Foster Wallace’s 1000-page novel, Infinite Jest, by Sept. 22nd.
The website also identifies some warm up readings, including his essays and short stories (including the most recent collection, This Is Water—his 2005 Kenyon College commencement address, which includes the parable I alluded to in my speech).
Since my summer reading list has grown as large as the stacks of books on the floor in my home office, I’ll probably not participate in the challenge of reading a novel some have called unreadable (though others praise it, or more pointedly, their own accomplishment in having finished it). But I do recommend Wallace’s essays and short stories: think of them as tapas and engaging conversation for those who don’t want a 5-course meal and an intense, multilayered lecture.
I saw that on facebook and was all Yeah! I’m Gonna Do It! And then I remembered that I tried to read IJ this spring and failed to finish. My wrists are too tired to hold the book up anymore. (whine)
So many I’ve talked to have said they tried, really really tried, but couldn’t get through it (and yes, if one’s wrists actually hurt while reading, that does tend to detract from the story, no?).