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F. Scott Fitzgerald’s New Story “Temperature”: 8 Reasons To Read It

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Originally rejected by the Saturday Evening Post, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story “Temperature” was thought to be a part of the author’s ouevre’ that was lost forever.

Recently unearthed by The Strand Editor Andrew Gulli–who has emerged in recent years as the Indiana Jones of finding lost literature–“Temperature” confronts the very demons that Fitzgerald couldn’t wrestle away by the end of his life.

Written 18 months or so before his death, “Temperature” is a short piece set in Los Angeles that’s about a writer, a beautiful actress and the cursing lure of physical beauty.

It’s also about being sick–sick in the heart with love, longing and ambition and how those three things will set you on an endless path that, as Fitzgerald says himself, “…might possibly go on forever.”

And not in a good way.

“Temperature” is about the fever of the West Coast, the uselessness of fame and the inability to ever apprehend the light of the glamorous world and shine it into the blackness of your own dark heart.

It’s worth a read, that’s for sure.

And here are my top eight reasons why:

1. You can enjoy peppy, pre-sitcom dialogue with madness as a theme.

2. While the characters’ dress is not described in great detail, they probably dressed better than you.

3. You can pretend that you are the subject of Fitzgerald’s writing, which would then almost always make you a rich person.

4. You can envision F. Scott’s pen as being, “a more elegant weapon for a more civilized age.”

5. You can enjoy a story that is much more light-hearted than The Great Gatsby.

6. You get to see inside the soul of the L.A./Hollywood F. Scott Fitzgerald. Or at least what was left of it…

7. You can read the only zany short story ever written about a misplaced cardiogram.

8. You can learn a very important American lesson: If you break someone’s heart they’re bound to get super famous and ruin your life.