Book Trailer For Madam President

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Hemingway's Lost Short Story


You may or my not have heard about Hemingway's lost short story. The son of a friend apparently had been holding onto the story for all these years. Seems Hemingway in 1925 wrote this satire on bull fighting and sent it to this friend. Now it has come back into the limelight and the Hemingway estate does not want it published. It will be sold at Christies for about eighteen thousand. Eighteen thousand dollars for a short story at a time when you couldn't' give away a short story. The form is basically dead. The heyday of the short story was in Hemingway's time when "slicks" like the Saturday Evening Post paid as much as four thousand dollars a story. In todays dollars, probably like twenty thousand, maybe more. Hemingway of course made his mark with the short story. In Our Time was a collection of stories that brought him to the attention of Max Perkins at Scribners. You know the rest of the story. So here we are in 2009 where a short story is discovered and people are willing to pay almost twenty thousand dollars for something the Hemingway estate deems unworthy of Ernest. As a writer I can only envy those days when the written word was held in such high esteem that a short story was like a movie today. Those writers were the celebs of their time, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Faulkner, Dos Passos. Apparently the story spoofs bull fighting, something Hemingway held in high esteem, but others do not want to see the light of day. It is interesting that the Hemingway short story will get about what it would have in 1925 dollars. I guess some writers really are timeless.

Books by William Hazelgrove