Vanishing Point is an experimental novel by David Markson which was published in References[edit]. ^ Joseph Tabbi (), The Encyclopedia of. In the literary world, there is little that can match the excitement of opening a new book by David Markson. From Wittgenstein’s Mistress to. Those who adored experimentalist Markson’s previous two outings (Reader’s Block, ; This Is Not a Novel, ) will be ecstatic anew as.

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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Vanishing Point by David Markson. Vanishing Point by David Markson. In the literary world, there is little that can match the excitement of opening a new book by David Markson.

And now comes his latest vanishung, Vanishing Point, wherein an elderly writer identified only as “Author” sets out to t In the literary world, there narkson little that can match the excitement of opening a new book by David Markson. And now comes his latest masterwork, Vanishing Point, wherein an elderly writer identified vanishiing as “Author” sets out to transform shoeboxes crammed with notecards into a novel — and in so doing will dazzle us with an astonishing parade of revelations about narkson trials and calamities and absurdities and often even pooint of the creative life — all the while trying his best he says to keep himself out of the tale.

A novel of death and laughter both — and of extraordinary intellectual richness. Paperbackpages. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Vanishing Pointplease sign up. Lists with This Book. Mar 27, Mike Puma rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Authors and their deaths.

Artists who were illegitimate or sired illegitimate children. Artists who became famous after abandoning other daviid. The friendships of celebrity thinkers philosophers and scientists with artists. Artists and their relationships with lovers or spouses. Artists and expectations for them given their education or literacy.

Feuds between artists and snarky things said about each other. Artists and their peers, mentors or students.

Artists who died in poverty. Baseball players and their nicknames. View all 8 comments. Mar 03, Nick Craske rated it it was amazing Shelves: Simple idea executed devastatingly well; quixotically morbid and intriguingly stimulating – altered-state inducing.

I love it to death. View all 5 comments. Apr 13, Jimmy rated it liked it Shelves: The book is pages long, containing exactly anecdotes which happens to be the year Author was born. Reviewer made that bit up, karkson the number of anecdotes.


Vanishing Point

But not the bit about Author being born. What was it Author quotes Anatole France as having said on page thirty-one? Brahms was forty-three before he completed his first vanishig. A symphony is no joke–unquote, says Author on page twenty-four. This Is Not a Novel.

Reviewer is intrigued that this novel reads like a collection The book is pages long, containing exactly anecdotes which happens to be the year Author was born. Reviewer is intrigued that this novel reads like a collection of tweets.

A novel which was written by hand on notecards. Then after many revisions, typewritten. Seven wealthy towns contend for Homer dead, Through which the living Homer begged his bread. The thought occurs to Reviewer that he has read the words of this book many times before. Just not in this order. Names Wittgenstein was called.

Death and art and petty egos, this book is about. The mackerel-crowded seas mentioned on page one-eighteen. Recites Author on page one-seventy-five. He forgot Wittgenstein’s Mistress. What was it Marianne Moore said about omissions? Says one Goodreads reviewer. Or is the artist some kind of representative? For pointillism to work, some of the points must be less pronounced. The fact that Ingmar Bergman and Michelangelo Antonioni died the same day.

In all languages but one. Charles Darwin was known to slice a fat book in half, to make it easier to handle. Or to rip out any sections he was not interested in.

Vanishing Point by David Markson

That lump, Ezra Pound called Robert Lowell. We can say nothing but what has been said; the composition and method is ours only. Author says Burton says. You mean Wally wrote poetry? Far off I heard the orchestra tuning their instruments.

Sep 02, S. I love David Markson. He is the best thing to happen to me this year.

I read his “Reader’s Block” in spring, which was similar to this and, coming first, bowled me over more. But this is about as good.

Vanishing Point – David Markson

I don’t recommend him to anyone because I am trying to keep him a secret, but hey, if you’ve read this far, know he’s marvelous. Jan 12, Drew rated it really liked it Shelves: Hard to know what to say about this one.

Starts out with pages of little quotes and tidbits about various artists, mostly writers and poets and painters. Then, subtly, turns into a meditation I hate using that word to describe any book, but here it’s appropriate on both mortality and immortality-through-art. Or, in other words, what is being a genius worth if you still have to die?

View all 11 comments. Apr 18, Richard rated it really liked it. Mar 17, Jonathan rated it it was amazing. A wonderful dance around Death, with the smoke from the twin towers traced through it.


It is not just the choices of the biographical details which are so perfect, but the language used to express them is often dazzling – the chosen word order of the sentences is particularly impressive. And, once again, we sense a man, and a life, and sorrow, in the gaps and the whispers.

Mar 08, Ian “Marvin” Graye rated it really liked it Shelves: The facts in this novel relate to artists, composers, musicians, performers, philosophers, sculptors and writers including their time, place and circumstances of death – perhaps their vanishing point?

If the writer known as Author can be believed, it reminds me of the days before the Interweb thingie, when some readers might cut quotations out of newspapers nowadays, I only cut out quotations from unpurchased Vollmann or Gass novels I find in bookshops, so if you ever find a space in one of their books where there was once an unclipped clipping, you know it was me.

I still have all of these clippings stored in manila folders. Some of the later folders contain print-outs of web pages, when I was afraid I might lose them due to their ephemerality, not realising that cyberspace might actually be forever.

This was obviously in the days before you could save web pages into another app, even if you could bookmark them. Theoretically, there is an entire intellectual history of my post-adolescence sitting in the folders, that will just be thrown out or burned when or before I die. Funny how I was trying to guard against the ephemerality of inspiration, but ultimately recognised that the clippings were part and parcel of my own sense of mortality.

It’s hard to work out whether David Markson found his facts in books or reviews of books.


Markson says of the last of his novels that He regards the real act of creativity as being in the rearrangement of his notes: Ideally, in fact, it will markon up someplace that will surprise even Author himself. Did he only do vahishing in the hope or expectation that some aspect of the Author might emerge in the text, whether by some act, omission or insertion by the Author or Markson himself, or by inference by us, the readers?

This begs a larger question: How much does the Author have to do with what we infer? How much is the Author responsible or irresponsible?