The Howling Fantods

David Foster Wallace News and Resources Since March 97

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OzWallace 2017 - David Hering Keynote!

It is my honour to be able to announce that David Hering (University of Liverpool, UK - @hering_david) will be keynote speaker at the Australian David Foster Wallace conference, OzWallace (1-3 September 2017), in Melbourne!

This excites me beyond belief! I am currently making my way through David's latest publication, David Foster Wallace: Fiction + Form, and have found myself captivated and continually amazed at the new insights into Wallace's work. I have dedicated a couple of previous posts to this publication that are worth looking at if you're interested, David Hering's Fiction and Form and Amazing Fiction and Form Excerpt.

David Hering isn't just one of the leading Wallace scholars internationally right now, he is an inspiring and captivating speaker. I had the pleasure of meeting David at the CUNY DFW Footnotes conference back in November 2009 where I saw him present his paper, “Dreams Within Dreams: Wallace, Lynch, Oblivion”. My pre-twitter quick response on this site was:

"Lynchian geek out. David presented the parallels in Wallace's and Lynch's narrative stategies through Lost Highway, Mulholland Drive, and Inland Empire. Spectacular!"

It's also super important to mention that David Hering organised the very first international David Foster Wallace conference, Consider David Foster Wallace, which was held way back in July 2009 at the University of Liverpool (Consider David Foster Wallace: Critical Essays collected 17 essays that stemmed from this conference.)

So... come and join us in Australia in September next year! Conference organiser, RMIT's Dr. Tony McMahon (also an occasional correspondent for this site), and his team are working to put together a fantastic event in my favourite Australian city, Melbourne.

I understand the call for papers is due very soon.

For more information about OzWallace 2017 follow Dr. Tony McMahon on twitter (@tony_mcmahon2) and hit up the OzWallace 2017 Facebook page.


David Hering is a Lecturer at the University Of Liverpool, UK where he teaches and researches contemporary literature, and co-directs the Centre for New and International Writing. He has published and written extensively on the work of David Foster Wallace: he is the editor of Consider David Foster Wallace: Critical Essays (2010) and the author of David Foster Wallace: Fiction and Form (2016), for which publication he received a Harry Ransom Centre/Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship for the purposes of researching Wallace's archive. His essays on Wallace have also appeared in David Foster Wallace: Critical Insights (2015) and The Cambridge Companion to David Foster Wallace (forthcoming). His writing has also appeared in publications including The Los Angeles Review of Books, Orbit and Critical Engagements.


P.S. For a super special discount on David Hering's, David Foster Wallace: Fiction + Form, order the book via and enter the code DFW2016 for an 40% discount (Note: this may only work for Australian purchases - big shout out to Rachael at Bloomsbury for this!)

Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 October 2016 00:36

Fourth Annual DFW Conference 2017 - Call for Papers

The call for papers and submission forms for the 2017 Annual David Foster Wallace Conference at Illinois State University (June 8-10, 2017) are now live.

Deadline is December 10, 2016.

Website: David Foster Wallace Conference

Facebook: David Foster Wallace #DFW17

Twitter: @DFWConference



World Mental Health Day Posts

There were a couple of Wallace related posts back on World Mental Health Day (Oct 10):



Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 October 2016 23:26

Global Wallace: David Foster Wallace and World Literature

Yet another Wallace publication from Wallace studies powerhouse, Bloomsbury. Yet another one to look forward to!

Due on the 1st of December is Lucas Thompson's, Global Wallace: David Foster Wallace and World Literature (also via Amazon).

From the Bloomsbury site (where you can view the TOC too):

David Foster Wallace is invariably seen as an emphatically American figure. Lucas Thompson challenges this consensus, arguing that Wallace's investments in various international literary traditions are central to both his artistic practice and his critique of US culture. Thompson shows how, time and again, Wallace's fiction draws on a diverse range of global texts, appropriating various forms of world literature in the attempt to craft fiction that critiques US culture from oblique and unexpected vantage points.

Using a wide range of comparative case studies, and drawing on extensive archival research, Global Wallace reveals David Foster Wallace's substantial debts to such unexpected figures as Jamaica Kincaid, Julio Cortázar, Jean Rhys, Octavio Paz, Leo Tolstoy, Zbigniew Herbert, and Albert Camus, among many others. It also offers a more comprehensive account of the key influences that Wallace scholars have already perceived, such as Fyodor Dostoevsky, Franz Kafka, and Manuel Puig. By reassessing Wallace's body of work in relation to five broadly construed geographic territories -- Latin America, Russia, Eastern Europe, France, and Africa -- the book reveals the mechanisms with which Wallace played particular literary traditions off one another, showing how he appropriated vastly different global texts within his own fiction. By expanding the geographic coordinates of Wallace's work in this way, Global Wallacereconceptualizes contemporary American fiction, as being embedded within a global exchange of texts and ideas.

Some more pics via @HouseofNaqvi over on Twitter.


The Great Concavity - Eps 18 & 19

Two more fantastic episodes have dropped since my last update:


Episode 18's guest on The Great Concavity is Sean Pratt (@SPPresents) the narrator of the 56-hour-long audiobook of Infinite Jest. It's an absolutely engrossing conversation about the recording of the audiobook and many other things. And yes, I did say I couldn't recommend the audiobook without endnotes. And yep, I understand there were technological issues at the time. And, yes, I think Sean makes a good case for why the end notes were not originally recorded and a .pdf was included (but as a podcast and audiobook listener while cycling or driving the reading pdf option seemed flawed), and, like mentioned in the podcast, I still wonder why each end note isn't a skippable track so the listener can decide to skip them if they wish...

But you know what? In all my negativity I never actually acknowledged how much hard work went in to making it, and I NEVER gave Sean credit for the incredible job he did narrating the novel.

Thank you, Sean.

(I think a little more credit than is due was sent my way too... but that's another story.)


Episode 19 has two guests, Rachel Laird & Amy Pelletier, who speak with Dave about reading Infinite Jest for the first time. I know I'm not the only one who pulled one of my copies of Infinite Jest back off the shelf after listening to this episode...

(Follow the show on twitter @ConcavityShow and subscribe to the podcast here)


The podcast is hosted by Dave Laird (@DaveLaird2) and Matt Bucher (@mattbucher,wallace-l,, Simple RangerSide Show Media Group) two Wallace enthusiasts with a wealth of Wallace knowledge to share.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 October 2016 23:04

Amazing Fiction and Form Excerpt

Oh, wow.

If you want a taste for how impressive David Hering's book, David Foster Wallace: Fiction +Form, is going to be then check out the excerpt of the chapter about The Pale King, Too Much Too Little, in the LA Review of Books.

I can't even decide what to quote to try and get you to read it because it's all so awesome. Hmm. How about this? (Emphasis mine)

This note clearly represents a crisis point in the life of The Pale King, exacerbated by the fact that a number of sections earmarked for the novel had been published in the short story collection Oblivion the previous year, leaving Wallace with less workable material from which to draw. In the period immediately following, Wallace devised a new narrative strategy to bring the disparate drafts together: he wrote himself into the novel.

Fiction + Form is available now at Amazon or 30% off in the Bloomsbury back to Uni sale now.

[Previously: Oh and be sure to listen to The Great Concavity podcast epidside starring David Hering too!)

Last Updated on Friday, 16 September 2016 19:42

. 2016











(So I really struggle with doing this every year but I can't not do this. Classic double bind.)



[External memorial posts below here later]


Other tributes to add to this list? (Even your own?) Let me know here.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 September 2016 00:10
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