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F Scott Fitzgerald The American Dream Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald the spokesman for the Jazz Age ruled Americas decade of prosperity and excess which began soon after World War 1 and ended around the time of the stock market crash of 1929 The novels and stories for which he is best known examine an entire generations search for the elusive American Dream of wealth and happiness Many of his works are derived from his own life and that of his wife and friends The early gaiety shows only one side of a writer whose second and final decade of work portrayed a life marred by alcoholism and financial difficulties troubled by lost love and frustrated by is lack of inspiration Fitzgerald was the son of well-to-do Midwestern parents He was a talented child with an early interest in writing plays and poetry As a young man he emulated the rich youthful and beautiful a social group with whom he maintained a lifelong love-hate relationship His first stories appeared in Princeton Universitys literary magazine which was edited by his friend and fellow student Edmund Wilson whom Fitzgerald considered his intellectual conscience Leaving Princeton for the army during World War 1 Fitzgerald spent his weekends in camp writing the earliest draft of his first novel Demobilized in 1919 Fitzgerald worked briefly in New York for an adversing agency His first story Babes in the Wood was published in The Smart Set The turning point in his life was when he met Zelda Sayre herself as aspiring writed and married her in 1920 In the same year appeared Fitzgeralds first novel This Side of Paradise originally entitled The Romantic Egoist which he had started while in the army Its hero Armory Blaine studies in Princeton serves in WW I in France At the end of the story he finds that his own self-centeredness has been the cause of his unhappiness The book gained success and gave Fitzgerald
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