Or should that be The Second-Rate Gatsby?
We’ve been reading and discussing Fitzgerald’s classic novella in class and now my work is all Gatsby. Does this happen to anyone else?
This would be fine if I were as great a writer as Fitzgerald. But I’m a beginner with a brain which works best when it’s left to run slowly and a busy life. I won’t be able to spend many days from 8.30am to 4.30pm on uninterrupted work, as Fitzgerald boasts.
So the results are likely to be embarrassing, although they may be illuminating for me, which is, after all, the point of the class.
I can’t worry about this too much. I just snicker and wince as Daisy takes possession of a significant character (they can’t do you for that can they? For character snatching?)
I think, as my brother once said, it’s probably just a phrase I’m going through, and, probably too, a phrase I need to go through. And if I must go through it then I’m glad I chose Fitzgerald, or that my tutor did, rather than Dan Brown.
Does this mean I don’t wish I’d written The Da Vinci Code? I think my anwer to that is variable.
I feel allowed to write because writing is my best shot at making money for the family, however unlikely. So I should want to write a blockbuster.
But the thing about Dan Brown is that he was sincere in his writing, I think.
He was either sincere in his determination to tell a good story or in his characters, or both, however preposterous some may judge these to be and I don’t think I could be sincere about a book like The Da Vinci Code.
I’m going to have to hope that people will want to read about things that matter to me, which is at best an open question.
Mine’s a Martini, darling.
With love from East Egg,