Quotes from letters between F. Scott Fitzgerald and John Peale Bishop

The following quotes from letters between F. Scott Fitzgerald and John Peale Bishop are extracted from The Letters of F. Scott Fitzgerald (1963).

“No news except I now get $2000 a story and they grow worse and worse and my ambition is to get where I need to write no more but only novels.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, March 1925

“I’m too much of an egotist and not enough of a diplomat ever to succeed in the movies.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, April 1925

“The cheerfulest things in my life are first Zelda and second the hope that my book has something extraordinary about it. I want to be extravagantly admired again. Zelda and I sometimes indulge in terrible four-day rows that always start with a drinking party but we’re still enormously in love and about the only truly happily married people I know.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, April 1925

“You ought never to use an unfamiliar word unless you’ve had to search for it to express a delicate shade – where in effect you have recreated it. This is a damn good prose rule I think.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, Winter 1929

“The main thing is: no one in our language possibly excepting Wilder has your talent for “the world,” your culture and the cuteness of social criticism as implied in the story.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, Winter 1929

“I believe that the important thing about a work of fiction is that the essential reaction shall be profound and enduring. And if the ending of this one [Tender Is the Night] is not effectual I should be gladder to think that the effect came back long afterwards, long after one had forgotten the name of the author.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, April 2, 1934

“The dramatic novel had canons quite different from the philosophical, now called psychological, novel. One is a kind of tour de force and the other a confession of faith. It would be like comparing a sonnet sequence with an epic.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, April 7, 1934

“I believe it was Ernest Hemingway who developed to me, in conversation, that the dying fall was preferable to the dramatic ending under certain conditions, and I think we both got the germ of the idea from Conrad.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, April 2, 1934

“When you plant a scene in a book the importance of the scene cannot be taken as a measure of the space it should occupy, for it is entirely a special and particular artistic problem.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald to John Peale Bishop, January 30, 1935

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