F. Scott Fitzgerald in Hollywood

He was confined by a weak heart to a bungalow at the Garden of Allah Hotel – a name, he assumed, that was someone’s idea of irony. Nothing came easy. Nothing. His books failed to sell even at the bottom-barrel price of 50 cents a pound. The studio police listened in on his frequent phone calls to the liquor store requesting a delivery. Old friends who had drowned in alcohol would turn up at all hours looking only vaguely like themselves and then refuse to leave until he committed at least one new sentence to paper. He had always been a bad speller, but he was confident as he re-read what he had just written that there was an “e” in lightning.

Howie Good is the author of more than a dozen poetry collections, including most recently The Death Row Shuffle (Finishing Line Press), The Trouble with Being Born (Ethel Micro Press), and Gunmetal Sky (Thirty West Publishing).

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