F. Scott Fitzgerald lived on Long Island, NY
F. Scott Fitzgerald's Background:
F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife once lived on Long Island. Together residing in a 5,000 square foot home in Great Neck from 1922 to 1924.
At this time in his life living on Long Island is where he was inspired to write his most prolific novel, The Great Gatsby. It was said the muse came from a Mansion in Sands Point, NY at the address 235 Middle Neck Road.
Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born September 24, 1896, in Saint Paul, Minnesota to an upper-middle-class family. Francis’s father, Edward Fitzgerald was of Irish and English descent and his mother, Molly Fitzgerald was a daughter of an Irish immigrant.
Scott Fitzgerald spent the early years of his life in Buffalo, New York and occasionally in West Virginia where his father had a career at Proctor and Gamble.
After his father's career ended, the family relocated back to Minnesota where Fitzgerald attended St. Paul Academy from 1908-1911. At the age of 13, he published his first piece of writing, a detective story in his school's newspaper.
When Fitzgerald turned 15, his parents sent him to the Newman School, a highly ranked Catholic prep school in Hackensack, New Jersey. Upon graduation, he decided to stay in New Jersey to further develop his writing skills at Princeton University.
Fitzgerald and Zelda
Fitzgerald became a second lieutenant in the infantry and assigned to Camp Sheridan in Alabama. While visiting a nearby country club, he fell in love with Zelda Sayre, a daughter of the Alabama Supreme Court.
Upon Fitzgerald's discharge, he moved to New York City to pursue a career in advertising in hopes to win Zelda over. He was employed by Barron Collier and living on Manhattan's upper west side.
Soon after, Zelda accepted his marriage proposal but wasn't convinced he could financially support her. She broke off the engagement, causing Fitzgerald to move back to Minnesota with his parents.
While living at home, he continued working on his writing and producing a semi-autobiographical story of his undergraduate career at Princeton.
The Side of Paradise, once revised was accepted by Scribner's in 1919 and published late March of 1920. Fitzgerald sold 41,075 copies within the first year and was able to win Zelda back with his profitable income from the novel.
They resumed their engagement and got married at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York. They had one daughter together, Frances Scot Fitzgerald, born on October 26th, 1921.
Fitzgerald and "The Jazz Age"
Paris in the 1920s was a significant time period for Fitzgerald's professional development. He made several trips to Europe and made acquaintances with the American expatriate community including Ernest Hemingway.
Although Fitzgerald's passion resided in novel writing, he sold several short stories to magazines and Hollywood Studios. Because of his lavish lifestyle, he ran into several financial difficulties and by his fourth novel in the 1920s, and he was completely drained.
Zelda was diagnosed with schizophrenia and Fitzgerald had to focus on her care. During this time, Fitzgerald developed a deeply rooted problem with alcoholism.
Fitzgerald and his Hollywood Years
In 1926, Fitzgerald was scouted by producer, John W. Considine, Jr., to relocate to Hollywood to write a flapper comedy for United Artists. He and his wife moved to a small bungalow in January.
Fitzgerald began having an affair with Lois Moran, described in his novel Tender is the Night. During this time, Zelda became increasingly dangerous, violent, and emotionally unavailable.
In 1936, Fitzgerald placed his wife in Highland Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina. Shortly after, Fitzgerald found movie work but, continued to struggle financially while entering a deal with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
While partnering with him, he worked on pieces like Gone with the Wind and revisions of Madame Curie.
The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby was a novel published in 1925 by Fitzgerald that described a cast of characters living in fictional towns, "West Egg" and "East Egg" on Long Island.
During the summer of 1922, the story concerned a young millionaire, Jay Gatsby and his obsession with Daisy Buchanan. The novel painted a portrait of the roaring twenties and told a tale of the "American Dream."
Fitzgerald's novel was based on parties he previously attended on the north shore of Long Island. His book explores themes of idealism, resistance, and decadence.
The Great Gatsby was published in April 1925 receiving very mixed reviews and sold poorly only 20,000 copies.
Fifteen years later, Fitzgerald passed away, and his novel received a revival during World War II. His novel was adopted into high school English class rooms and was taken by several screenwriters.
On May 10th 2013, Fitzgerald’s masterpiece “The Great Gatsby” would return to the silver screen. Jay Gatsby was played by the world-wide famous movie actor Leonardo DiCaprio. Daisy Buchanan was played by The Academy Award Winning Actress Carey Mulligan. Nick Carraway was played by Tobey Maguire who achieved fame with his massive success at the Box Office for his role in the Spider-Man Trilogies.
Today, The Great Gatsby has been recognized as an American masterpiece and a literary classic.
F. Scott Fitzgerald had a profound impact on Long Island, NY in more ways than one. Outside of living in Great Neck, NY he also contributed something much greated to Long Island. In his passing he left a legacy that would bolster & glamorize the prestige that came with living on the East End of Long Island, NY.