"I fell in love with her courage, her sincerity, and her flaming self respect. And it's these things I'd believe in, even if the whole world indulged in wild suspicions that she wasn't all she should be. I love her and it is the beginning of everything." This is how Fitzgerald spoke about his lover, wife and muse, Zelda. It could be said that Francis Scott Fitzgerald loved too much, that his love for his wife Zelda and the destructive lifestyle they lived is actually what killed him. But he wouldn't have had it any other way, for he never wanted to live to be one hundred, to have great grandchildren or quietly retire. Burning the candle at both ends and squeezing all the life out of every moment, Fitzgerald's life was the embodiment of the idealistic jazz age. .
"Mostly, we authors must repeat ourselves, that's the truth. We have two or three great and moving experiences in our lives, experiences so great and moving that it doesn't seem at the time that anyone else has been so caught up and pounded and dazzled and astonished and beaten and broken and rescued and illuminated and rewarded and humbled in just that way ever before. Then we learn our trade, well or less well, and we tell our two or three stories each time in a new disguise maybe ten times, maybe a hundred, as long as people will listen." (Fitzgerald, 1958).
Fitzgerald was born in Saint Paul, Minnesota in 1886. His own name reflected a nostalgic view of American aristocracy for he was after the famous Francis Scott Key, who wrote the Star Spangled Banner, and whom the Fitzgerald family had a distant relation to. His parents wee poor and longed for any connect to greatness. His father drank away his sorrows and his mother was the daughter of Irish immigrants trying to prove themselves in America and create a life for themselves (Bruccoli, 1994). .
After losing two of her children to disease, his mother, Mollie, spoiled him and showed him off, dressing him in suits and having him sing and recite poetry.