And David Foster Wallace committed suicide in the middle of writing this book, "The Pale King." The "most boring and unpleasant" thing he was writing about was the IRS.
Today, the pages of "The Pale King" sit in bins and boxes around [editor Michael] Pietsch's desk at home, but he bristles at the suggestion that he won't get through them in time to publish the novel, as he has promised -- and as Little, Brown has announced -- in the spring of 2010.Good God. May I suggest not making a book at all, but a website? Put everything up, connected with links, and just let us try to find our own way through it ... or give up, as Wallace did.
It doesn't seem to faze him that among the various drafts are sometimes "10 different versions of one chapter or one scene."...
"You do not change a word if someone's not there to argue with you or discuss it with you," he says.
What this means is that he has his work cut out for him. "It's not clear what the intended structure was," Pietsch admits, although Wallace left copious outlines and notes about "The Pale King" that he will use as guides. The published book "will just stop where it stops," and may include some of Wallace's notes and journals.