A National Book Award-winning American novelist, he is especially known for his 1973 work, Gravity's Rainbow. His other works include V (1963) and Mason & Dixon (1997).
He studied engineering at Cornell University before joining the U.S. Navy at age eighteen.
His works address themes such as racism, imperialism, sociology, theology, and music.
With his wife, Melanie Jackson, he had a son named Jackson.
A fictionalized version of Pynchon appeared in an episode of the John Larroquette Show in the early 1990s.