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Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself

Rolling Stone writer David Lipsky recalls the five-day journey he took with David Foster Wallace during Wallace’s 1996 “Infinite Jest” book tour.

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Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself:
A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace
By David Lipsky
Broadway Books
352 pp., $16.99

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The only thing that strikes me as more daunting than being inside the thought process of David Foster Wallace might be the experience of being inside the head of the person writing his biography.

If experimental and avant-garde writing “can capture and talk about the way the world feels on our nerves,” as Wallace believed, then David Lipsky’s Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace is an avant-garde biography of how the world felt on Wallace’s nerves.

If you want a linear read, this biography is not for you. If you’re a Wallace fan, however, you’re not looking for a linear book. But you do want one that pushes you. And Lipsky pushes.

“Art requires you to work,” Wallace tells Lipsky, on their five-day journey during the tail end of Wallace’s 1996 “Infinite Jest” book tour.

Lipsky was sent on the road by Rolling Stone magazine to write a piece on Wallace, then 34, who was considered one of the most important young writers of the time.

A contributing editor at Rolling Stone, Lipsky’s writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, the New York Times, and other major publications; his stories have been anthologized; and he has won numerous awards. His books include “The Art Fair,” “Three Thousand Dollars,” and “Absolutely American.”

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