10 Sessions Thursdays, 6:30 pm EDT - 8:00 pm EDT December 15, 2022 to June 22, 2023
The Center for Fiction
& Online via Zoom
This reading group has reached its capacity. To join the waitlist, please email Sam Lim-Kimberg at [email protected].
12/15, 1/5, 1/26, 2/16, 3/9, 3/30, 4/20, 5/11, 6/1, 6/22
Participants may attend in person at The Center for Fiction or participate remotely via Zoom.
Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace has become one of those imposing books, like Ulysses or Gravity’s Rainbow, that is a so-called “must read” that few have actually read from start to finish. Over 1,000 pages (including extensive self-penned endnotes) and set in a nebulous near-future North America, Infinite Jest is at once a satirically pointed examination of the millennial America of instant gratification, self-medication, and family dysfunction and an indefinable narrative adventure of shifting voices and time frames, compelling allusions, multiple plotlines, and encyclopedic knowledge.
While Infinite Jest has some of the dizzying playfulness of Barth, the dark themes of Gaddis, and the conspiratorial paranoia of Pynchon, it shares the microscopic lens and density of Proust and the extensive experimentation, love of language, and humor of Joyce. However, Infinite Jest is an entirely singular and anomalous kind of novel. Often called an exemplar of “new sincerity” in fiction, Infinite Jest is a profoundly human work, defined not as postmodernism but something that pushes beyond postmodernism.
In advance of the first meeting, participants should read to page 95 at the break “YEAR OF THE DEPEND ADULT UNDERGARMENT,” along with the endnotes. The “Notes and Errata” should not be neglected.
Elegant Complexity by Greg Carlisle
William Mottolese has taught at Fordham University and Saint Joseph’s College in Indiana and is presently Chair of the English Department at Sacred Heart Greenwich. He has published on such subjects as Olaudah Equiano, Laurence Sterne, and James Joyce and is presently at work on projects on Joyce, teaching critical thinking, and the relation of literary modernism to twentieth-century popular music. He has taught for a decade on the faculty of The Center for Fiction where he has led classes on James Joyce, David Foster Wallace, Salman Rushdie, Irish literature, and postcolonial literature. William is an award-winning teacher, published poet, and proud father of three children.
About this series
Whether you’re looking to catch up on great novels or you’re interested in exploring a new writer or literary period, our reading groups offer high-level literary discussion led by experts in the field.
Unputdownable: How to Grab the Reader's Attention and Keep It with Stefan Merrill Block$150
Friday—Sunday March 31 to April 2, 2023
Crafting Unforgettable Characters with Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry$150
Friday—Sunday March 31 to April 2, 2023
Who Is You: Writing Second-Person Stories with Nat Mesnard$150
Saturday & Sunday 12:00 pm EDT - 3:00 pm EDT April 1 to April 2, 2023
Speedboat and Sleepless Nights and 1970s New York with Mike Levine
Four Sessions Tuesdays, 6:00 pm EDT - 7:30 pm EDT April 4 to April 25, 2023
Crossing the Lines: Applying Writing Strategies Across Genres with Dawn Raffel$395
Once a week Mondays, 7:00 pm EDT - 9:00 pm EDT April 10 to May 15, 2023
Your Problems Are Your Solutions: Generative Revision Through Plot with Christopher M. Hood$495
Once a week Tuesdays, 6:00 pm EDT - 8:00 pm EDT April 11 to May 30, 2023
How to Structure the Strange with Rebekah Bergman (Sold Out)$125
Saturday, 11:30 am EDT - 4:00 pm EDT April 15, 2023
Making Time: A Generative Writing Workshop with Kate Milliken (Sold Out)$395
Once a week Mondays, 7:00 pm EDT - 9:00 pm EDT April 17 to May 22, 2023
Members Only: The LiterariansFree
Wednesday, 12:30 pm EDT - 1:30 pm EDT April 19, 2023
World and Languages: Writing About Languages, Travels, and Immigration with Jenna Tang$295
Once a week Wednesdays, 7:00 pm EDT - 9:00 pm EDT April 19 to May 10, 2023
On Writing Grief: A Two-Day Bootcamp with Diane Zinna$150
Saturday & Sunday 12:00 pm EDT - 3:00 pm EDT April 22 to April 23, 2023
Everything Authentic Is Simultaneous: Time and Memory in Crime Fiction with William Boyle$395
Once a week Wednesdays, 6:30 pm EDT - 8:30 pm EDT April 26 to May 31, 2023
The Art of Teleportation: How to Write with a Strong Sense of Place with Laia Jufresa$150
Saturday & Sunday 11:00 am EDT - 2:00 pm EDT April 29 to April 30, 2023
Henry James's The Golden Bowl with Sheridan Hay
Four Sessions Wednesdays, 6:00 pm EDT - 7:30 pm EDT May 3 to May 24, 2023
Mastering the Art of the Short Story with Madeline Stevens$495
Once a week Thursdays, 6:00 pm EDT - 8:00 pm EDT May 4 to June 22, 2023
The Utopian Imagination: Creative Worldbuilding with Nat Mesnard$150
Saturday & Sunday 12:00 pm EDT - 3:00 pm EDT May 6 to May 7, 2023
Writing Masquerade: The Supernatural and Folklore as Fantasy in Fiction with P. Djèlí Clark (Sold Out)$125
Saturday, 12:00 pm EDT - 4:30 pm EDT May 13, 2023