F Scott Fitzgerald

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The Impact of Fitzgerald's Personal Life on His Writing

F. Scott Fitzgerald lived a relatively hard life plagued by alcoholism and depression, yet was a powerful writer. Characters in his novels, such as Jay Gatsby from "The Great Gatsby" and Dick Diver from "Tender is the Night" seem to experience similar troubles. We know what Fitzgerald struggled with throughout his life; to what extent did he give his characters the same struggles? Was it a conscious decision, or a way of coping? In many cases the characters don’t find peace, just as Fitzgerald didn’t. How did Fitzgerald use his personal life, whether willingly or not, to influence his writing?

  • I think it is undeniable that Fitzgerald largely reflects upon his own life through the trials and tribulations of his fictional characters. Some of the parallels he draws are uncanny, however whether this was a conscious decision, or merely a demonstration of the artist's tendency to draw upon his own experiences, is difficult to ascertain. It would be interesting to look at essays written by Fitzgerald and critiques written about his works, as well as taking a closer look at his characters in order to craft a more solid perspective on the matter. – arhaydu 7 years ago
  • I would love to read an article like this. To piggy-back off arhaydu a bit, looking at the wealth of Fitzgerald's different works, from the best-known novels to essays, as well as his short stories, is a must. Additionally, there is actually a slim volume out there titled On Booze. Relevant, and it is a quick, enjoyable read--shouldn't put too much more stress time-wise on the writing process for this article. – KatharineBooth 7 years ago
  • That's quite interesting. In Stephen King's book "On Writing" he mentions having a connection with Jack Torrance form "The shining". Both Stephen King and Jack Torrance were struggling writers who had sunk into alcoholism. Writing characters similar to yourself is something that comes naturally. without having the intention of creating yourself on the page your are drawn to writing what you know. We can find many examples of this and it can easily be applied to Fitzgerald and his works. – ReidaBookman 7 years ago