Infinite Jest was meant to be a failed entertainment, not a potted amusement,” D.T. Max writes. “[Wallace] warned his editor [Michael Pietsch] that he wasn’t going to tie up his story in a nice little bow:

“Any sort of conventional linear ending for this stuff is in my opinion going to seem either linearily thrillerish in a way that doesn’t go with the rest of the book; or else incredibly prolix and complicated.” Reminding Pietsch that the plot of the book he’d bought “has always been more of an arc than a terminating line …. That is to say (I am not at my clearest on this, I know), a conceived ending that’s not so much anticlimactic as aclimactic? I can (but hopefully will not) give you about 4300 thematic/ theoretical reasons why an aclimactic close here will be best— e.g. resonating echoes w/ themes of stasis, annulation, paralysis, undecidability, clarification of questions > solutions to questions etc. (Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story 193).