Hemingway: never out of Fashion

Hemingway’s works as well as his life are being mined for material–and there is a lot of richness there as we know. See below.

The Sound & The Flurry: How Podcasts Are Becoming A Hollywood Gold Mine

Village Roadshow has increasingly been expanding its television business including adapting Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, a reboot of College Bowl, an adaptation of video-game Myst and Lo Life, a scripted series based on the Brooklyn street crew led by Big Vic Lo.

A Moveable Feast

Alix Jaffe, VREG’s Executive Vice President, Television, who will oversee the relationship, said, “As we continue to build our television division, we have the unique opportunity to partner with Kelly and the team at Treefort Media to expand our slate with premium, cross-platform storytelling that will create a more immersive experience for audiences. We believe there is an incredible synergy between our teams and are looking forward to the partnership.”

Kelly Garner, Treefort’s Founder and CEO added, “This is an incredible opportunity not only to collaborate with Village Roadshow’s talented team, but also to supercharge our slate by tapping into Village Roadshow’s iconic and diverse library. We can’t wait to explore the possibilities and expand our pipeline into TV and film.”

Shakespeare and Co. with Sylvia Beach. Hem with one of his many wounds

Treefort is represented by UTA.

Where is Hemingway’s Soul? Writer Michael Patrick Shiels looks for answers.

Where is Hemingway’s soul? A writer says he knows.

Very nice article. Some photos added by me. Best, Christine

Modern America’s most revered, complex and troubled novelist Ernest Hemingway – the man known as “Papa” – traveled (and took his readers) to battlefields and bars in places such as the beaches of Normandy and the canals of Venice, plus the Congo, Caribbean and China, to name a few.

Hemingway hunted German U-boats (from his fishing boat) off Key West; survived multiple plane crashes; and avoided being gored at the “Running of the Bulls,” in Pamplona, Spain before doing himself in with his favorite shotgun on an early July day near Sun Valley, Idaho.

Hem statue in Bar, Havana

Robert Wheeler authored “Hemingway’s Havana: A Reflection of the Writer’s Life in Cuba,” featuring rich photography, and “Hemingway’s Paris: A Writer’s City in Words and Images.”

Since the sun never sets on Hemingway’s logistical legacy, where, I asked Wheeler, does he think Hemingway’s soul is most palpable: Petoskey? Paris? Pamplona?

Hem married to Hadley in Horton Bay Michigan

“I would have to say based on my travels Hemingway’s spirit can be found beautifully in Havana. I think the spirit of him as a young apprentice writer in love with Hadley is alive and well in Paris,” said Wheeler. “But in Havana you can find his spirit not only walking in the sea breeze along the Malecon, but also in the various cafes he frequented.”

Hemingway drank mojitos in Havana at the earthy La Bodeguita del Medio; and his “Papa Doble” daiquiris at the snazzy La Floridita, where a life-sized statue of him is seated at the bar. Most travelers to Havana make a pilgrimage to visit Hemingway’s former home “Finca Vigia” and its grounds, which has been restored by Lansing-based Christman Company.

Finca Vigia

“You can especially feel Hemingway’s presence through the voices of the people there who knew him or knew of him. He left them with beautiful memories and with tears,” said Wheeler, who researched the book by traveling to Cuba via Toronto.

“I’ve never flown to Cuba on a flight from the United States, but there are certain ways you can,” Wheeler explained. (Canadians, by contrast to U.S. citizens, can fly freely to Havana due to the absence of a trade embargo.) “Americans have to provide a reason why they are traveling there. It’s very easy, though, to say, for instance, that you’re writing an article for your local newspaper. Then you maintain a record of that and keep your receipts and have an itinerary you can show if need be.”

Verandas at the finch

Wheeler’s first Hemingway read was “The Garden of Eden,” which was published posthumously in 1986.

“From the second I opened that book I was hooked,” he said. “It was a foreign land; it was a man and woman on an extended honeymoon in Mediterranean France. After that I went on to read Hemingway’s Nick Adams series, so, in a sense, I went from France right over to Michigan.”

Hemingway set the Nick Adams stories in Northern Michigan towns such as Horton Bay and Mancelona where he grew up summering on Walloon Lake. A life-sized statue of young Ernest Hemingway was unveiled in the center of Petoskey in summer of 2017.

The statue unveiled last year in Petoskey, Michigan of Young Ernest Hemingway

Could another Wheeler book featuring Hemingway’s roots in Northern Michigan be in the works?

ContactTravel Writer Michael Patrick Shiels at MShiels@aol.com His radio program may be heard weekday mornings on 92.1 FM. His latest book is “I Call Him Mr. President – Stories of Fishing, Golf and Life with my Friend George H.W. Bush”

Thank you, Michael Patrick Sheils for this article as well as Robert Wheeler for his book on Hemingway and Cuba. Best, Christine

Ezra Pound, Hemingway, Politics that split them up.

My friend Trudy found this interesting Article about the writers of Paris in the ’20s. I edited it to shorten but I think you will enjoy it. Photos added by me.

Hem, Hadley, bumby

Best, Christine

Ernest Hemingway and Ezra Pound’s friendship spanned continents—and ideologies.

Michael Hogue

Ernest Hemingway, fresh off his marriage to Hadley Richardson, his first wife, arrived in Paris in 1921. Paris was a playground for writers and artists, offering respite from the radical politics spreading across Europe. Sherwood Anderson supplied Hemingway with a letter of introduction to Ezra Pound. The two litterateurs met at Sylvia Beach’s bookshop and struck up a friendship that would shape the world of letters.

Sylvia Beach’s Bookstore

They frolicked the streets of Paris as bohemians, joined by rambunctious and disillusioned painters, aesthetes, druggies, and drinkers. They smoked opium, inhabited salons, and delighted in casual soirées, fine champagnes, expensive caviars, and robust conversations about art, literature, and the avant-garde. Pound was, through 1923, exuberant, having fallen for Olga Rudge, his soon-to-be mistress, a young concert violinist with firm breasts, shapely curves, midnight hair, and long eyebrows and eyelashes. She exuded a kind of mystical sensuality unique among eccentric highbrow musicians; Pound found her irresistible.

Ezra Pound

Pound was known for his loyalty to friends. Although he had many companions besides Hemingway—among them William Butler Yeats, James Joyce, T.S. Eliot, Marianne Moore, Robert McAlmon, Gertrude Stein, e.e. cummings, Pablo Picasso, Wyndham Lewis, T.E. Hulme, William Carlos Williams, Walter Morse Rummel, Ford Madox Ford, Jean Cocteau, and Malcolm Cowley—Hemingway arguably did more than the others to reciprocate Pound’s favors, at least during the Paris years when he promoted Pound as Pound promoted others.

Olga Rudge

Young Ezra

Pound edited Hemingway’s work, stripping his prose of excessive adjectives. Hemingway remarked that Pound had taught him “to distrust adjectives as I would later learn to distrust certain people in certain situations.”

Olga and Ezra

Pound, however, grew disillusioned with Paris, where his friends were gravitating toward socialism and communism. Paris, he decided, was not good for his waning health. Hemingway himself had been in and out of Paris, settling for a short time in Toronto. In 1923, accompanied by their wives, Pound and Hemingway undertook a walking tour of Italy. The fond memories of this rejuvenating getaway inspired Pound to return to Italy with his wife Dorothy Shakespear in 1924. They relocated, in 1925, to a picturesque hotel in Rapallo, a beautiful sea town in the province of Genoa.


Young Ezra

The move to Italy also effectively terminated Pound’s glory years in Paris, about which Hemingway wrote affectionately:

More than anything else, Italian politics—and the rise of fascism—damaged Hemingway’s regard for Pound, who became a zealous supporter of Mussolini and a reckless trafficker in conspiracy theories.

 Hemingway offered Pound some money, sensing that money was needed, but Pound declined it. 

The falling out was no secret, and other writers took sides. William Carlos Williams wrote to Pound in 1938, saying, “It is you, not Hemingway, in this case who is playing directly into the hands of the International Bankers.”

Archibald MacLeish helped to orchestrate Pound’s release from St. Elizabeth’s, (A mental asylum Pound had been committed to. See below as to how he got there.) drafting a letter to the government on Pound’s behalf that included Hemingway’s signature, along with those of Robert Frost and T.S. Eliot. A year later Hemingway provided a statement of support for Pound to be used in a court hearing regarding the dismissal of an indictment against Pound.

Archibald MacLeish

Hemingway awoke on the morning of July 2, 1961, put a 12-gauge, double-barreled shotgun to his head, and, alone in the foyer of his home, blew his brains out. He was 61. Pound’s friends and family didn’t tell him about Hemingway’s death, but a careless nurse did, and Pound reacted hysterically. The older of the two, Pound, at 72, was free from St. Elizabeth’s, where he’d spent 12 solemn years. He had returned to his beloved Italy to finish out his long and full life. In the autumn of 1972, he died peacefully in his sleep in Venice, the day after his birthday, which he’d spent in the company of friends.

Allen Mendenhall is an associate dean at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law and executive director of the Blackstone & Burke Center for Law & Liberty.

ME here: I may have over-edited re: how Ezra ended up in a psych facility.  Ezra Pound was closely aligned with the Fascists in Italy.  He was later imprisoned in Pisa by the liberating American forces in 1945 on charges of treason. In Pisa, he purportedly was placed in a small 6 x 6 cell and had a mental breakdown. He was ultimately sent to St. Elizabeth’s psychiatric hospital in Washington D.C. for 12 years. Friends including Hemingway sent money and petitions for his release which finally happened. While most acknowledged that he was a bit “crazy,” most felt he was far from any sort of danger to anyone including to his country.  Once released he returned to Italy and died in Venice eleven years after Hemingway’s death.  Christine

New Book about The Sun Also Rises: Everyone Behaves Badly

No one defined masculinity more thoroughly than Ernest Hemingway, particularly in his best years, i.e. the 30’s and 40’s. I just read a review of a new book out by Lesley M. M. Blume, called “Everybody Behaves Badly:  The True Story Behind Hemingway’s Masterpiece, The Sun Also Rises.” 


I always liked that quote from The Sun Also Rises. Maybe it’s just cynicism, but I prefer to think that it’s realism.  The end of that quote is “Everyone behaves badly—given the chance.”

In addition to discussing the real life people upon whom the characters in the book are based, Ms. Blume’s book discusses the issue of sexuality in “The Sun Also Rises” as well as in Hemingway’s posthumously published 1986 novel, The Garden of Eden with its gender-bending main characters well ahead of their time.  Hemingway was “one of the last authors to be a celebrity in his own right, back when ‘manly’ was a good thing.

Lesley Blume with Valerie HemingwayLMMB VH Plaza


The book attempts to answer the question of whether Hemingway’s persona of hyper-masculinity was real or fake and notes that “we haven’t solved the problem of how to be a man in the modern age and Hemingway was a caricature of the last generation’s attempt to do so, as Donald Trump may be of ours.” We no longer admire—thank God and for good reason—killing large animals in Africa or watching them die in bull fights. The concept of masculinity is complex and evolving.

Parenthetically, I highly recommend watching the documentary called The True Gen.  It’s about Hemingway’s friendship with Gary Cooper.  Gary Cooper apparently was always a gentlemen and Hemingway…wasn’t always restrained.  Yet, somehow they had an extremely strong friendship that lasted for a lifetime—which was a rarity for Hemingway—with Cooper at times forcing Hemingway to stop with the image and be real. Despite personalities that were almost polar opposites, both worked hard, were more sensitive that you might suspect, and hid parts of themselves for the image each wanted to project. It worked for them.  The movie is a gem and is well worth watching.I found it extremely touching. Cooper and Hemingway died 6 weeks apart: Cooper of cancer and shortly thereafter, Hemingway killed himself.


So the book by Lesley Blume sounds valuable and additive to Hemingway analysis. She knows the period well and I expect the book will ring true and be a load of fun to read.

More about Hemingway’s Letters

For readers of Ernest Hemingway, it can be tempting to mix the iconic writer’s fictional characters with the public persona of the writer himself. He never kept a journal and apparently integrated many of his personal experiences into his art.

More of Hemingway’s letters are being published and they are so revealing and fun. For example, Hemingway is known as being a bit of a bully to his wives yet some of the letters show great sensitivities to Martha Gellhorn  and admiration and support for her career as a writer. Please take a look when you have time.

Best, Christine

EH5598P 1940 Ernest Hemingway and Martha Gellhorn in Sun Valley, Idaho, 1940. Photographer unknown in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.
EH5598P 1940
Ernest Hemingway and Martha Gellhorn in Sun Valley, Idaho, 1940. Photographer unknown in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.

Photos only with commentary: Part 1. Hadley years

Wedding to Hadley
Wedding to Hadley

Bride and Groom
Bride and Groom

Hem and Bumby
Hem and Bumby


I thought I’d post some photos that I had not viewed in a while and are not as frequently viewed. I love them all and hope you enjoy them too. Best, Christine

While injured in WW I
While injured in WW I

Max perkins
Max perkins

Papa and Jack/Bumby
Papa and Jack/Bumby


Just when you think everything that can possibly be written about Hemingway or his life or his writing has been done, another level of knowledge is uncovered.



The third volume of Hemingway’s letters, which covers the period 1926 to 1929, has been published. Those were truly wonderful years. He wrote The Sun Also Rises in about six weeks—at least for the first draft—in 1926. It was published in 1927. These letters cover correspondence with some of the literary luminaries of the day as well as cover a very rich and turbulent period for Hemingway.


We are all familiar with the spare prose and tight structure of his writing. Consequently, his letters are surprisingly rambling and fun. He writes very honestly about his divorce from his first wife, Hadley, and of the pain of falling in love with a woman who became their mutual friend, Vogue journalist Pauline Pfeiffer. He also wrote of the drama of the birth of his first son, Patrick, by cesarean section during which Pauline almost died. It also was at this period of time that he relocated to Key West and completed his second book Men Without Women.

Hem and Hadley
Hem and Hadley


While Hemingway aficionados are familiar with his dislike of his mother throughout his life, it may be less well known that he was very fond of his father who killed himself. In the letter to Pauline’s mother following his father’s suicide, he wrote, “I was awfully fond of my father—and still feel very badly about it all and not able to get it out of my mind and my book into my mind.”


Seventy percent of the letters have never been published before. They reveal a side to Hemingway that has had very little exposure: his intense drive to be the best writer out there, his insecurities, his enjoyment of a little gossip. He wrote F. Scott Fitzgerald asking him to write “all the dirt.”

Hem and Scott
Hem and Scott


It also seems clear that the culminating event in A Farewell to Arms, i.e. Catherine’s death during childbirth—is based in large part on Pauline’s difficulties. At the end of A Farewell to Arms when the nurse asks Frederic Henry if he’s proud of his newborn son, Frederic’s response is almost verbatim from a Hemingway letter in which he replied, “No, he nearly killed his mother.”


Hemingway had always asked that his letters never be published, but his fourth wife Mary agreed to the publication of some and I’m not familiar enough with the details of the estate to know exactly how these came to be published.


I love these letters. read them.
I love these letters. read them.

Read the letters and enjoy. Also, if you’re in New York catch the exhibit that’s at the Morgan Library. You won’t regret it. Love, Christine

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