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F Scott Fitzgerald As a icon of the Lost Generation F Scott Fitzgerald portrayed the youthful Jazz Age of Americans in the 1920s Fitzgerald defined the Jazz Age as a time when a new generation had grown to findall wars fought all faiths in man shaken Holt 436 His life was filled with the same tragedies and disillusionments that plagued his characters With a success to his first novel and a beautiful wife his future appeared bright however his glamorous lifestyle was cut short by his own alcoholism and declining creativity Named for his famous distant cousin on his fathers side Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born on September 24 1886 in St Paul Minnesota Britannica 393 His father Edward Fitzgerald was a salesman whose furniture business had failed Mary Mollie McQuillan his mother was the daughter of a successful wholesale grocer Mary had lost two children to epidemics before her bright handsome Scott came along Kuehl The family moved regularly but settled finally in St Paul Fitzgerald started to write at St Paul Academy at an early age His high school newspaper published his detective stories encouraging him to pursue writing more than academics His first published story The Mystery of the Raymond Mortgage appeared in 1909 in Now and Then After high school Fitzgerald entered Princeton University in 1913 where he failed to become a football hero He wrote the scripts and lyrics for the Princeton Triangle Club musicals and was a contributor to the Princeton Tiger humor magazine and the Nassau Literary Magazine He left his studies in 1917 because of his poor academic records and took up a commission in the US Army While stationed near Montgomery Alabama in 1918 he met and fell in love with an 18-year-old Southern belle Zelda Sayre A constant stream of love letters punctuate the period of their engagement while Fitzgerald worked in Manhattan and Zelda remained at her parents home in Montgomery Millett
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