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Trimalchio : An Early Version of The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald

Trimalchio : An Early Version of The Great Gatsby

Paperback

Published: 25th April 2002
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This first edition ever published of Trimalchio, an early and complete version of F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic novel The Great Gatsby now appears in paperback. Fitzgerald wrote the novel as Trimalchio and submitted it to Maxwell Perkins, his editor at Scribner's, who had the novel set in type and the galleys sent to Fitzgerald in France. Fitzgerald then virtually rewrote the novel in galleys, producing the book we know as The Great Gatsby. This ur-version, Trimalchio, has never been published and is markedly different from The Great Gatsby: two chapters were completely rewritten for the published novel, and the rest of the book was heavily revised. Characterization is different, the narrative voice of Nick Carraway is altered and, most importantly, the revelation of Jay Gatsby's past is handled in a wholly different way.

About the Author

F. Scott Fitzgerald was one of the major American writers of the twentieth century -- a figure whose life and works embodied powerful myths about our national dreams and aspirations. Fitzgerald was talented and perceptive, gifted with a lyrical style and a pitch-perfect ear for language. He lived his life as a romantic, equally capable of great dedication to his craft and reckless squandering of his artistic capital. He left us one sure masterpiece, The Great Gatsby; a near-masterpiece, Tender Is the Night; and a gathering of stories and essays that together capture the essence of the American experience. His writings are insightful and stylistically brilliant; today he is admired both as a social chronicler and a remarkably gifted artist.

James L. W. West is Distinguished Professor of English at Pennsylvania State University, where he is a Fellow in the Institute for the Arts and Humanistic Studies. His most recent book is William Styron, A Life (1998).

"The Cambridge edition of Trimalchio is for scholars and Fitzgerald fanatics...Trimalchio has shown me a new way to love Gatsby. I'm compelled into a vast aesthetic contemplation: I dream of The Great Gatsby as it might have been, greater still-" Adam Begley, New York Observer "...the principle reason to read Trimalchio is to observe a masterpiece taking form through the process of revision. Even those not easily caught up in textual detective stories may take an interest in puzzling out the effect of the changes..." Scott Donaldson, Star Tribune "West provides a meticulous and comprehensive critical apparatus...this fine edition will be of significant interest to Fitzgerald scholars and students." Choice "West provides a meticulous and comprehensive critical apparatus...this fine edition will be of significant interest to Fitzgerald scholars and students." Choice "...I enjoyed every second of Trimalchio...had it been published as the legitimate text it would probably still be considered a masterpiece." Christopher Fischbach, Rain Taxi "Treat yourself to a copy...This new version is an earlier draft of Fitzgerald's novel, and it seems even better than the one finally published." Press Democrat "Fitzgerald enthusiasts are advised to acquire a copy immediately." The Times "Raw and edgy, Fitzgerald's prose practically dances across the page. For all of its subtle, flawed deviations from the finished work, the book possesses a charm that Fitzgerald never realized so completely again." Missouri Review

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Illustrationsp. ix
Chronology of composition and publicationp. xi
Introductionp. xiii
History of the textp. xiii
Editorial principlesp. xix
Trimalchiop. 1
Record of variantsp. 147
Explanatory notesp. 165
Illustrationsp. 179
Perkins' letters of criticismp. 185
Note on Trimalchiop. 190
Note on eyeskipp. 191
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald was a bright, handsome and ambitious boy, the pride and joy of his parents and especially his mother. He attended the St. Paul Academy, and when he was 13 he saw his first piece of writing appear in print: a detective story published in the school newspaper. In 1911, when Fitzgerald was 15 years old, his parents sent him to the Newman School, a prestigious Catholic preparatory school in New Jersey. There he met Father Sigourney Fay, who noticed his incipient talent with the written word and encouraged him to pursue his literary ambitions.

After graduating from the Newman School in 1913, Fitzgerald decided to stay in New Jersey to continue his artistic development at Princeton University. At Princeton, he firmly dedicated himself to honing his craft as a writer, writing scripts for Princeton's famous Triangle Club musicals as well as frequent articles for the Princeton Tiger humor magazine and stories for the Nassau Literary Magazine. However, Fitzgerald's writing came at the expense of his coursework. He was placed on academic probation, and in 1917 he dropped out of school to join the army. Afraid that he might die in World War I with his literary dreams unfulfilled, in the weeks before reporting to duty Fitzgerald hastily wrote a novel called The Romantic Egotist. Although the publisher Charles Scribner's Sons rejected the novel, the reviewer noted its originality and encouraged Fitzgerald to submit more work in the future.

Fitzgerald was commissioned a second lieutenant in the infantry and assigned to Camp Sheridan outside of Montgomery, Alabama. It was there that he met and fell in love with a beautiful 18-year-old girl named Zelda Sayre, the daughter of an Alabama Supreme Court judge. The war ended in 1919, before Fitzgerald was ever deployed, and upon his discharge he moved to New York City hoping to launch a career in advertising lucrative enough to convince Zelda to marry him. He quit his job after only a few months, however, and returned to St. Paul to rewrite his novel.

Visit F. Scott Fitzgerald's Booktopia Author Page


ISBN: 9780521890472
ISBN-10: 0521890470
Series: The Cambridge Edition of the Works of F. Scott Fitzgerald
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 216
Published: 25th April 2002
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Dimensions (cm): 21.6 x 13.8  x 1.3
Weight (kg): 0.26