It’s been quite a while since I’ve shared an author with my readers that I personally love. I’ve been a little bit busy lately, but I’m starting to get organized and find time to wow you with my brilliance…ok, maybe just entertain you for a few minutes everyday.
I recently started up the Authors We Love series, but so far the revamped series has been guest posts. Well I’M BACK!!! That’s right, I’m back now to give you a look into authors I love to read. And don’t worry I’ll be back again next week with another author, as will the guest post installation.
Here’s a formal announcement (I’m really just saying this to make it real for me): Authors We Love with have two posts every week. That’s right, TWO POSTS!!! Early in the week, either Monday or Tuesday, there will be a guest post from anyone who wants to submit their favorite authors. Later in the week, either Thursday or Friday, is my time to share an author with you all. This is going to be the plan for as long as I can keep up with it and as long as I keep getting guest posts (which are great so far and I can’t wait to see more involvement!)
So now that that’s out of the way…here’s more about an author I love.
The author I wish to discuss with you today has been with me for many years. He is one of the authors that really got me back into reading early in High School. This author is none other than Ernest Hemingway.
It all started when I was in my local used bookstore scanning the shelves. At the time I was just there because my mom worked there for a few hours a day and I had nothing else to do. I knew a few authors’ names but they were only names at the time. While scanning the shelves, the title on the spine of a book caught my eyes. The book I pulled off the shelf was Ernest Hemingway’s For Whom The Bell Tolls. What made this particular book stand out? Was it Hemingway’s name? Was the spine flashy? No, neither of those reasons. It was Metallica.
You heard me right, a band influenced my reading. In a way they are one of the reasons I started reading again. As most of you probably know, Metallica has a song titled For Whom The Bell Tolls. This may sound like a shallow reason to buy a book, but I bought it solely because my thought process was “I wonder why the two have the same names.” It could have either been Metallica taking the name from the book (which was the obvious truth to adult me) or Hemingway taking it from the song (obviously NOT the case, look at the date 14-year-old me) (I think I was around that age.)
The funniest thing about getting this book is how long it took me to read it. I was still a slow reader and only read mainly a lunch or a study hall. But even though I started this book, I finished a few more Hemingway books in the middle. I was intrigued enough by what I read to buy more of his. It almost became an obsession at the time t get whatever came into my bookstore. I think I read A Farewell To Arms (loved it), The Sun Also Rises, and some of a short story collection I have (I’ll discuss that one in a bit.)
Normally I would discuss a little about why I like his writing so much. I wish I could do it justice. I know there are people who find him way too geared toward being a manly man and shit like that. I can see where they are coming from. And I know that in real life he wasn’t the most gentlemanly of people. And he liked to kill animals. AND this did cross over into many of his books and stories. I’m not a person to go off on a safari, go fight in a savage war, or go see a bull fight…but for a few hundred pages I can become engrossed in a time in the not so distant past. In a time when (at least from the way it is in his books) life seemed simpler to my young reading mind.
I can’t talk about my love for Hemingway without mentioning A Moveable Feast. I LOVE this book. It’s a book of memoirs from his years in Paris. I devoured this book, and then two years later I devoured it again. I tried reading it a third time but other things came up and I put it aside. I might even read it again soon. I haven’t read any book twice before this one! What makes me love this book by him so much is that it made me want to be a writer. I wanted to go to Paris and live the life he did. Going to the cafés to write. It seemed like a great way to live, even though he was living on a tight budget I wanted that. I know there are things I’m glossing over with this book (along with others here) but these are the things that stuck.
One more reason I love Mr. Ernest here. His short stories. I have The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway, a collection I thought to be complete until the years when I was able to search the internet with any accuracy. It is a fairly complete collection and I’ve read it ALL over the course of my junior year of high school (again mainly during lunch and for this particular year, my math class). Most of the time with a short story collection, even to this day, I’ll read a story here and there. I won’t read the whole book at one time. That’s what I like about short stories though. They are tasty little morsels of yummy writing that you can read some now and read more later. But I think you’ve caught on already that I was obsessed with reading Hemingway. These stories really made me solidify him as one of my favorite authors.
I just did a little research before writing this post. What is said to be the most complete Hemingway short story collection is called The Collected Stories of Ernest Hemingway. It was published in the UK, not sure why it’s not in the US. Because of this it’s not cheap (at least by my standards). I found it on Amazon for like $18+shipping. I guess this is a book I’ll have to get “when I grow up.” (that is unless someone wants to get me a birthday present 😉 here’s the link to make it easy, hehe.) Because of the price I’ll probably settle for The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway: The Finca Vigia Edition. I haven’t taken too close of a look to see what one has over the other, all I know is that my collection is almost complete but still is missing some things.
I’ll end this with one more mention. I own Hemingway’s complete poems. I couldn’t, not buy it when I saw it. I read some of it in the however many years it is that I’ve owned it. I don’t really know if I could say I like his poetry. I don’t hate it. I just wasn’t wowed. But that’s fine because he’s not known for it. Hell, I didn’t know he wrote ANY poetry until I saw the book. What I like about it though is there are some pictures of the manuscripts of some poems. That always makes me happy to see the words of an author/poet in their own handwriting.
I hope you enjoyed this installment of Authors We Love. As always I love hearing from my readers. Especially with this author, I would greatly enjoy hearing what others think of him. I’ve met many people who like him and many who can do without him. Which are you?
Also, I’ll always leave this reminder at the end of my posts, there is an open call for Authors We Love submissions! If you want to guest post, just send me what you have and I’ll work out a date. (My email is in the About Me section.) This is the same with the new Aged Pages series, open call for submissions of guest posts for that one too.