Introduction to Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself
“Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself” is a non-fiction book by David Lipsky. The book is a transcription of a five-day interview conducted by Lipsky with the late American writer, David Foster Wallace. The interview took place towards the end of Wallace’s book tour for his magnum opus “Infinite Jest”. Lipsky’s book provides a unique insight into Wallace’s life, work, and the creative process behind his writing. In this review, I will analyze the book’s themes, writing style, and overall impact.
Themes of Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself
The book revolves around several themes that are central to the life and work of David Foster Wallace. The primary theme is the creative process and the challenges that come with writing. Lipsky’s interview provides a rare glimpse into Wallace’s writing style, how he approached his work, and the struggles he faced. Wallace was candid about his experiences with writer’s block and how he managed to overcome it. He talked about how he would sometimes write for days without stopping, often working late into the night.
Another key theme is Wallace’s views on fame and the writing profession. The author was highly ambivalent about fame and the expectations that came with it. He was also critical of the commodification of literature and the pressure that writers faced to produce commercially successful work. He believed that writers should focus on their craft and produce works that spoke to their own experiences and values.
The book also delves into Wallace’s personal life, including his struggles with addiction and depression. Lipsky’s interview provides a nuanced and sympathetic portrayal of Wallace, shedding light on the human behind the literary icon.
Writing Style Lipsky’s writing style is straightforward and unadorned. He adopts a conversational tone throughout the book, which makes the interview feel more like a casual chat between friends than a formal interview. This approach works well, as it allows Wallace to open up about his life and work in a more natural and candid way. Lipsky also uses humor and irony to great effect, particularly when discussing Wallace’s views on the writing profession and the publishing industry.
“Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself” is a must-read for anyone interested in David Foster Wallace’s life and work. The book provides an intimate and unfiltered look into the mind of one of the most influential writers of his generation. Lipsky’s transcription is a testament to his skill as an interviewer, as he manages to draw out Wallace’s thoughts and ideas in a way that is both insightful and engaging.
The book’s impact extends beyond its portrayal of Wallace, however. It is also a reflection on the writing profession and the challenges that writers face. Wallace’s views on the commodification of literature and the pressure to produce commercially successful work are particularly relevant in today’s publishing landscape, where authors are increasingly expected to market themselves and their work.
“Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself” is a valuable contribution to the literary canon. Lipsky’s transcription provides an intimate and insightful look into the life and work of David Foster Wallace. The book is an excellent resource for anyone interested in Wallace’s writing style, creative process, and personal life. It is also a reflection on the challenges that writers face in today’s publishing landscape. Highly recommended.