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Dreaming Up the Wake

InthebeginningwasthewoidandJamesJoycewasobligedbyhiswriter's consciencetofillitwithexpandablelanguage.UlysseswaspublishedbySylvia BeachovertheShakespeareandCompanytrademarkin1922,buttheactual compositionofJoyce'snextbook,FinnegansWakedidnotbeginuntilthespring of1923.Whattranspiredbetweenthosedatesisamatterforspeculation; clearly,Joyce,who,likeFlaubert,neverrepeatedhimself,wasdutyboundto findafreshandnovelapproachtothenovelitself.TheIrishwriternever publiclyannouncedanyintentions.Afterall,inanearlynotebook,hewentso farastolisttherefusaltogiveinterviewsorwriteletterstotheeditoramong theinnovationsofwhichhewasparticularlyproud:"JJabolishedpreface, dedication,notes,letterstopress,interviews,chaptertitles,capitals,inverted commas."1Itisconsequentlyveryimportantthatheconservedjustaboutevery scrapofpaperconnectedwithhislastbook,inadvertentlygivingusanintimate ifcloudyrecordofsome18yearsofcreativeactivity.