Posts Tagged ‘The Great Gatsby’


The Man Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald– “Gatsby Revisited”

September 12, 2014

F. Scott Fitzgerald 

The Man Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald

Author: David Handler

Print Length: 256 pages

Publisher: Road (June 26, 2012)

Buy Here from Amazon, $7.99: Click: The Man Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Stewart Hoag Mysteries)

I am writing a book that parallels The Great Gatsby and thought I’d get some background information from the library on F. Scott Fitzgerald. Boring. But one book I got by accident was this which had Fitzgerald’s name in the title. It turned out to be a terrific diversion from the others. It is about a has-been writer with a basset hound that sleeps on his head.

The narrator has been asked to ghost write a book by a media-favorite who has writers’ block. What a reader doesn’t know is how the plot actually does go along the same path as The Great Gatsby and Fitzgerald’s life. What an inspiring surprise and the mystery makes more and more sense as it untangles. I couldn’t put it down and when the book was over I had plenty to think about.




GATSBY – “The Best Fiction of All Time”

January 4, 2012

I have read this book at least five times (at various stages of my life), but, as I was telling my friend Rod, a real classic is one that mirrors different things in you each time you read it. Usually I am in a Nick Caraway mood, but this past holiday, I felt more like the disillusioned Gatsby. Why doesn’t matter, but the book was there for me, and that does. Rather than write an essay that states the obvious I thought I would indulge myself with a poem that is my take on the classic. See what you think. John


The Art of SUBTEXT

October 18, 2009
Beyond Plot

from the author of The Believers


Paperback: 182 pages

Publisher: Graywolf Press, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-1555974732

Trade Paperback: 6.9 x 5 x 0.6 inches


Available, click here from


     The master short-story writer, Charles Baxter, provides a complex read on something  poet Marianne Moore once expressed this way, “The power of the visible, is in the invisible.” Here Baxter examines stories “with a magnifying glass, looking for the secret panel, the hidden stairway, the lovingly concealed dungeon and the ghost moaning from beneath the floor.”

     He shares his conclusions about staging scenes. In real life, he says, good families (i.e. normal, boring ones) don’t have them, but these are the building blocks of drama. And that’s the point. We want to see things played out on the page or on the screen that for one reason or another we are hesitant about in our everyday exchanges. To capture that contradictory process great stories, “don’t depend so much on what the characters say they want as what they actually want but can’t own up to.” The author has us reconsider classics from Ahab’s obsession in Moby Dick to a rather profound observation about the power of fantasy in The Great Gatsby. Then of course there is John Cheever’s “The Simmer,” Franz Kafka, and Chekhov’s “The Lady with the Dog.” But what of the dark night of the soul lit by Dostoyevsky, the world’s foremost “psychologist of rage?” That comes later under “Staging a Desire.” Read the rest of this entry ?