I live only here and there in a small word in whose vowel (‘thrust’ above, for instance) I lose my useless head for a moment. The first and last letters are the beginning and end of my fishlike emotion.
It seems to me that in Beckett there is a similar motif: "I'll draw me a head" says the narrator of Texts for Nothing, but the "I" is no less 'drawn' than the head. It is on the same plane as the head, not something that does the drawing. Throughout the Texts, ephemeral "I"s come and go, drawn and erased in the writing.
In both Kafka and Beckett, the "I" of writing is something intermittent, fragile, and belated. But this is not simply a feature of fiction. Beckett and Kafka are not of that number of writers delighting in the constructedness of fictional worlds. If there is pathos in the spectral and scarcely embodied "I" in Beckett's world and the tentative "I" who lives in Kafka's Diaries, this is because fictional beings are not confined to fiction, nor is it only in fiction that the I is a fragile and secondary thing.