Why F. Scott Fitzgerald Wrote The Great Gatsby

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Why F. Scott Fitzgerald Wrote The Great Gatsby

On a warm summer day in 1924 when F. Scott Fitzgerald sat down to start his next project, he had no idea that he would be writing one of the greatest novels in history. In the summer and fall of 1924, Fitzgerald spent his time in France writing a novel that would eventually become known as The Great Gatsby. While the novel is loved by almost all who read it, it is fully understood by few, for to fully understand "Gatsby" one must know its author as well.

F. Scott Fitzgerald was born Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald on September 24, 1896 in St. Paul, Minnesota. Son of Edward Fitzgerald and Mary McQuillian, he was named after his second cousin three times removed, Francis Scott Key, the author of The Star Spangle Banner ("A brief life of Fitzgerald" 1). The Fitzgeralds lived quite comfortably on Mary McQuillian's father's inheritance of $250,000. While hitting some hard times, his mother's name and the appearance of money is what had kept the Fitzgeralds in "the country club set" even though there was no constant source of income. Fitzgerald said it best when he stated that he lived in "a house below average, on a street above average" ("Introduction to F. Scott Fitzgerald" 1-2).

Trying to provide their son with the best education possible the Fitzgerald's sent their son to the Newman School, a Catholic Prep School in New Jersey from 1911-1913. After graduating from the Newman School, Fitzgerald entered New Jersey's prestigious Princeton University. While at Princeton he wrote lyrics for musicals that the Triangle Club, Princeton's theater group, would perform. Also, Fitzgerald was a contributor of the Princeton Tiger, as well as the Nassau Literary Magazine, both campus...

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