Chicago Tribune: How F. Scott Fitzgerald went from washed up to winner again

In the Chicago Tribune:

Hollywood doesn’t have a benevolent reputation when it comes to nurturing novelists, but F. Scott Fitzgerald, it seems, had little grounds for complaint.

In fact, the down-on-his-luck writer used the opportunity to work as a highly paid day laborer on screenplays including “Gone with the Wind” to rejuvenate himself personally and professionally before his sudden death at the age of 44. Those rewarding final years in Hollywood are the subject of Stewart O’Nan’s 14th novel “West of Sunset” and appearance March 21 at novelist Elizabeth Berg’s Writing Matters event at the Hemingway Museum in Oak Park.

We caught up with O’Nan for a few quick questions about Fitzgerald, “West of Sunset” and his admiration for people who react to dire circumstances with resilience and endurance.


And a reminder:

Author Stewart O’Nan discusses his novel ‘West of Sunset’

7 p.m. March 21

Hemingway Museum, 200 N. Oak Park Ave., Oak Park


3/21/15, 7 pm: Elizabeth Berg and WRITING MATTERS present STEWART O’NAN


Stewart will be at the Oak Park Arts Center and Hemingway Museum in Oak Park, IL next Saturday!  Check out a great story about Elizabeth Berg’s Writing Matters in the Chicago Tribune and on her own site.

The details of the event is as follows:

Elizabeth Berg and WRITING MATTERS present STEWART O’NAN
3/21/15, 7pm

Four times a year, we present a gifted author who gives an intimate and unique (and often amusing) talk about him or herself and how they became the writer they are. We focus on authors we love and feel deserve far more attention than they get. This is an elevated kind of book signing, designed to be part of a real evening out. We provide the author, the beautiful venue of the auditorium at the Hemingway Museum, and wonderful things to eat and drink (this time it’s champagne and extravagant desserts!). All the proceeds of our ticket sales go to The Magic Tree Bookshop for use by the children at Hephzibah: the kids can wander in,  pick out a book that speaks to them, and take it home, for free.

At each event, we have an essay reader as a warm-act, talking about what books and reading mean to them. We always have some sort of surprise, too. We allow for questions from the audience at each event.

Stewart O’Nan, our March author, has a new novel called WEST OF SUNSET coming out January 13th. It’s about F. Scott Fitzgerald’s years in Hollywood, which came near the end of his life, and it’s garnered great reviews. He’ll talk about this and his other books, and you’ll come away with a real sense of who this author is. Come and take part in this wonderful series; you’ll leave inspired, edified, and happy.  We’re growing for a reason–people really like what we do! The comment I hear most often it, “This was so much FUN!”

“O’Nan is on a kind of mission to restore a simple, true sense of humanity to the novel.”

[get your ticket!]