Here’s your chance to be in the pictures.
Casting for a movie about Ernest Hemingway is about to get underway in Miami and Los Angeles. According to Project Casting, Anthony Hopkins has been rumored to play Hemingway.
What type of roles are they casting for?
Yesterday, issues of race. Today, hamburgers.
That’s 101 Books for you, friends. You never know what might pop up on this blog.
The image below is Ernest Hemingway’s hamburger recipe, via the BBC and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library. Is it any surprise that Papa liked his burgers pink and juicy in the middle?
This is a copy of the style sheet Ernest Hemingway used while working at The Kansas City Star early in his career as a writer.
It’s a little difficult to read. But if you can read it, there’s still a lot of good, relevant advice in there–especially considering he used it in 1917.
Hemingway said he was heavily influenced by this style sheet throughout his career.
Take a look at the PDF.
Notice the first few sentences in the top left of the page: “Use short sentences. Use short first paragraphs. Use vigorous English.”
Yeah, that’s definitely Hemingway.
Some other excerpts:
From the land of strange:
A couple of weeks ago, Tampa, Florida hosted the 33rd annual Sloppy Joe’s “Papa Hemingway Look-Alike Contest.” Stephen Terry, 56, who’s a software developer, won the contest and, holy smokes, he looks just like Papa.
You can see his photo over at the Tampa Bay Times.
Terry defeated 124 other Hemingway wanna-be’s, including (and this is the most random fact about all of this) Paula Deen’s husband, Michael Groover. Insert your favorite Paula Deen joke here.
Groover was actually a finalist for the Sloppy Joe’s Hemingway Look-Alike crown.
I got to say:
If I had to describe The Sun Also Rises in one sentence, I’d probably say something like “Imagine a European, classier version of the movie Animal House, and you’ve got The Sun Also Rises.”
I think that’s fairly accurate.
The book details the adventures of several American ex-pats who travel from Paris to Pamplona to see the running of the bulls, watch bull fights, drink enormous amounts of alcohol, and engage in casual sex.
In addition to Animal House, the novel reminds me a little of a European version of Jack Kerouac’s On The Road. And that’s actually a little strange because Hemingway and Kerouac couldn’t have more polar opposite writing styles.
It’s just a lot of care-free twenty-somethings traveling around, meeting new people, and “living the life.”
If a writer of prose knows enough of what he is writing about he may omit things that he knows and the reader, if the writer is writing truly enough, will have a feeling of those things as strongly as though the writer had stated them. The dignity of movement of an ice-berg is due to only one-eighth of it being above water. A writer who omits things because he does not know them only makes hollow places in his writing. –Ernest Hemingway
Before I wrap up The Sun Also Rises (review coming tomorrow), I thought I’d take one more look at Hemingway’s writing style.
He called it the “Iceberg Theory,” and it’s a great descriptor of his style.
Essentially, he gives you the facts—those hard facts are the tip of the iceberg floating above water. Everything else—the supporting structure—floats beneath the water, out of sight from the reader.
William Faulkner once said, “[Hemingway] has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.”
Hemingway responded: “Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?”
No surprise here if you’ve read my review of The Sound And The Fury, but I stand in Hemingway’s camp on this one. To me, the best writing is clear, simple, and to the point.
That’s why I think anyone who writes web copy, whether it’s a blog, an article, and especially any form of marketing content, should look long and hard at Hemingway’s writing style.
As a guy who spends all day writing for the web, I’ve probably been subconsciously using Hemingway’s style for years. With that, here’s what I think Hemingway can teach you about writing for the internets.