Friday, October 30, 2009

F. Scott Fitzgerald's tax returns.

In the new issue of American Scholar, University of South Carolina law professor William J. Quirk examines F. Scott Fitzgerald's tax returns and draws some unexpected conclusions, such as refuting the common notion that Fitzgerald was a reckless spendthrift (surprising to anyone who has read Fitzgerald's letters to his editor, Max Perkins, as they usually include the writer's request for an advance on royalties). He also notes that Fitzgerald was paid more during his time in Hollywood ($1000 per week) than William Faulkner ($300 per week). Quirk estimates that Fitzgerald made an average of $24,000 per year, which translates, in today's dollars, to about $500,000 annually.

(Hat tip to PhiloBiblos. Photo of Fitzgerald, 1932, by Carl Van Vechten, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division)

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