Dearest Mr. Hemingway,


I’ve finished a MS, one with which, within which, I feel a great deal of pride and peace. However, I’m having difficulty finding time to perform final editing tasks, and I still have noticeable reservation in releasing it to the world– finding trouble bringing myself to that level of courage. I’m reading through your letters, noticing your habits, diligence, prose precision. I’m hoping you can offering something in this newly acquired book, given as gift from my mother, that will change my character– simply embolden me to write, then blindly release.

Another matter I wanted to address with you this morning, right before I pour my third cup: How did you wake a 5am so consistently, after nights of wine with Mr. Fitzgerald and other counterparts? I’m succeeded a couple times, but more often than not I’ll let my head back into the comforting palm of that pillow. Again, anything you can suggest…

Last semester I lectured on your work, ‘Sun Also Rises’, discussing the roaming Libertine qualities of the characters; their curiosity, their obvious excess (pardon the term), interactions. What specifically did you intend with that MS, if anything? Or, is that the answer to my question, perhaps an example I should follow: throw paragraphs together in the moment, to effectively capture that moment, and RELEASE?

The time, 8:23am. Wish I had the whole day to write, as you once did. Have an office to my self, as well. I can only imagine what I would create… How many books would I have by now, out in the world? I certainly wouldn’t be on someone’s clock, assigned a wage to my worth…


You’ll have to forgive me. I tend to scorch when that topic lands. Also wanted your thoughts on writing pen-to-paper vs typing. I used to frequently look down upon writers who typed more than actually wrote, including myself. What did you do, and what do you see as most beneficial to Craft? My problem is I WILL write with pen, but put off transferring by way of key punch, if ever do it at all. Again, what was your system?

8:33. You’ll notice in my writing, in the enclosed MS, that I have an obsession with time, possible to my appreciative and perceptive detriments. I think the reason I time-stamp so much [much I hate that phrase] is to let readers know where I was, what I was thinking, when I was writing, at specific points in my Life. Although so many other writers tell me it’s impossible: I want to capture EVERYTHING. No matter how seemingly repetitive or mundane… Like now, on this couch, sun squeaking through thin openings in vertical shutters behind me, fridge humming, my 3rd cup waiting, my son’s toys surrounding me like arresting officers– Shouldn’t have made that, as I know I’ll get a mocha en route to winery. Caffeine and I.. far more associated than that poison the industry calls wine. Lately, I’ve reflected with only disgust with what it does to sentences, thought, translation. Writers should stay far from anything with alcohol when they write. Don’t you agree?

DO you agree, Mr. Hemingway?


Sir, I want to thank you for all you’ve written, and all the characters you’ve shared. I’ll continue to enjoy your work, and your defiantly refined pages. While at work today, I promise to keep my pen moving; capturing characters to start, then considering their candidacy for story immortality. I will also start tonight with my final edits. And I’ll do them quite quick, hopefully sending my MS to print this coming week. And if readers catch a couple typos, that’ll only highlight my bravery with rushed willingness to get my book into reading hands.


Enjoy your day, sir.

I’ll write you again quite soon.



Mike Madigan