Dating a Masterpiece: When was The Great Gatsby Written

when was the great gatsby written
by CJ McDaniel // July 14  

When was The Great Gatsby Written? The Great Gatsby has become one of the great American novels and an essential text in high school and college literature courses across America. Set during the Roaring Twenties, its tale is one of love, obsession, and corruption of American ideals that still resonates today with readers. But why was such an iconic work written? This article will examine its creation history and why and how its readership continues today.

The Mastermind Behind The Great Gatsby

Scott Fitzgerald created one of America’s enduring classics, The Great Gatsby – forever immortalized among American literature as one of its timeless works – marking an unprecedented period in his work. Deliberation on its authorial process uncovers an engaging tale, adding depth and intrigue to Jay Gatsby and his unattainable dream. Writing started on April 10, 1925, by Charles Scribner’s Sons for publication ten months later as one of its outstanding narratives in American literature.
Fitzgerald began work on The Great Gatsby shortly after publishing his successful first novel, This Side of Paradise. Eager to leave an indelible mark in literature, Fitzgerald found inspiration in the exciting atmosphere of Jazz Age New Orleans and Roaring Twenties society; both served to shape Gatsby’s world by showing some of its excesses – something which unquestionably influenced its creation and story arc. This way, Fitzgerald was significantly impacted by time and place when creating The Great Gatsby novel!

The Role of Zelda Fitzgerald in The Great Gatsby

One cannot discuss The Great Gatsby without acknowledging Zelda Fitzgerald, Zelda’s wife, and muse, who played an enormous part in its writing. Their complex relationship played an influential role, reflecting a fascination for what seemed out-of-reach such as Gatsby himself. Zelda herself represented much of what the American Dream stands for – this sentiment found resonance through Gatsby’s desire for Daisy Buchanan and Zelda herself, who inspired his character through being an unattainable lover himself!
Fitzgerald found inspiration for The Great Gatsby of Long Island from various sources, including his personal life. Gatsby’s tragic attempts to recapture his lost past and win back Daisy Buchanan mirror Fitzgerald’s struggles to hold onto a high-flying life with Zelda Fitzgerald–something Gatsby frequently struggled to do himself during this same period compared to Fitzgerald himself! Fitzgerald found solace in both worlds when considering the frenetic myopia of Gatsby and the chaos and neglect that often gripped their respective lives during that period for himself!

The Evolution of The Great Gatsby’s Title and its Debut

Several drafts of his novel went through multiple iterations before finally landing on what has become its timeless title: Trimalchio in West Egg, “On the Road to West Egg,” Gold-Hatted Gatsby,” The High Bouncing Lover,” and “Among Ash Heaps and Millionaires.” Fitzgerald finally settled upon this timeless name through revisions and iterations.

Fitzgerald finished The Great Gatsby after two years of labor-intensive writing on April 10, 1925, to mixed reviews from critics at first. Although some criticized its literary quality and labeled it a “minor novel” or “not as great as it should be,” its timeless masterpiece status and tremendous impact remain undiminished over time; today, adaptations, interpretations, and imitations continue.

A Reflective Look at The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby was written against an intriguing historical backdrop, perfectly capturing its subject matter with vivid language and symbols from 1920s America. Showcasing all of its themes, motifs, and characters that became immortal to readers’ collective memory of Jazz Age America, F. Scott Fitzgerald has left us all testament to his genius ever since penning down this timeless masterpiece which now spans nearly 100 years ago when first writing it on paper as F. Scott Fitzgerald first set pen to paper to write this memorable tale of lovelorn millionaires like Jay Gatsby himself first took pen to paper crafted the novel which tells this timeless classic novel set deep within 1920s America that epitomized its recklessness, decadence glamour as embodied within Jazz Age America with themes, motifs, symbols that remain immortal as everlasting reminders to readers worldwide who continue reading this tale from around this decadence by providing insight from F Scott Fitzgerald himself who first created such works such as The Great Gatsby almost 100 years ago! Today stands as a testament to F. Scott Fitzgerald, who first set pen to paper nearly 100 years ago to pen down an emoting tale about an innocent millionaire that still stands as a testimony today almost 100 years after being first released after being written!

At its release, The Great Gatsby first came into publication in 1925 at the height of America’s Roaring Twenties – an age when social and cultural revolutions were at their apex. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel is an impressive and moving commentary on excess, decadence, and tensions associated with that era; through Nick Carraway as its narrator, it explores the lives and loves of a wealthy elite, including Jay Gatsby’s doomed love affair with Daisy Buchanan (or at least that was his goal in life!).

Fitzgerald’s writing is rich, poetic, and deeply evocative of its period; its glamour and darkness come through vividly in The Great Gatsby novel. Notable among its complex yet nuanced characters are motivations and desires that often remain obscure. Perhaps most famously, The Great Gatsby is an early example of modernist storytelling, which broke conventional narrative conventions while exploring form and structure experimentations.

Frequently Asked Questions About The Great Gatsby

Q: When was The Great Gatsby written?
A: It was initially published in 1925.

Q: Who wrote The Great Gatsby?
A: F. Scott Fitzgerald is the author of this classic novel.

Q: Is The Great Gatsby considered a classic of American literature?
A: The Great Gatsby is widely recognized as a classic work.

Q: Where is The Great Gatsby Set?
A: It takes place during New York’s Roaring Twenties in fictional towns on Long Island, such as West Egg and East Egg, as well as Manhattan itself.

Q: Is The Great Gatsby an account of real-life events?
A: Although The Great Gatsby is fiction, its plot draws heavily upon F—Scott Fitzgerald’s experiences during his youth during the Jazz Age.

Q: Did The Great Gatsby receive critical or commercial acclaim upon its release?
A: While initially, The Great Gatsby did not meet with immediate critical or commercial success, over time, its reputation and acclaim increased substantially.

Q: To what extent has The Great Gatsby had an impactful influence on literature and popular culture?
A: The Great Gatsby has had an immense effect on literature, particularly concerning exploring themes like American Dream, wealth accumulation, and happiness pursuit. Furthermore, its work has inspired numerous adaptations of films, theater, and other art forms.

Q: Is The Great Gatsby primarily about love?
A: Although The Great Gatsby contains romantic elements, its primary focus lies with themes related to social status, wealth, and the American Dream’s corruption.

Q: Who are the main characters of The Great Gatsby?
A: Jay Gatsby, Nick Carraway, Daisy Buchanan, and Tom Buchanan are among the main protagonists in The Great Gatsby.

Q: What is the central theme of The Great Gatsby?
A: It primarily explores the illusion of the American Dream, wealth as an illusion, and its inability to restore what was once lost in past experiences.

Q: Did F. Scott Fitzgerald achieve commercial success with The Great Gatsby during his lifetime?
A: Unfortunately not; The novel became widely recognized after Fitzgerald passed.

Q: What is the famous closing line from The Great Gatsby?
A: “So we beat on, boats against the current, back into time again.”

Q: Has The Great Gatsby ever been made into a film adaptation?
A: Absolutely. Multiple adaptations have been made, including Jack Clayton’s 1974 version and Baz Luhrmann’s 2013 adaptations.

Q: In what ways does The Great Gatsby depict the Jazz Age?
A: The film captures all that period’s excess, extravagance, and decadence while showing how social and moral attitudes shifted during that era.

Q: Is The Great Gatsby required reading in schools?
A: Yes. The novel has long been part of American literature and English curriculums as essential reading, making its place among school curricula an unavoidable obligation.

Q: Are There Any Notable Quotes from The Great Gatsby?
A: Some memorable lines from The Great Gatsby include, “So we beat on, boats against the current, continually being carried backward into time” and “I hope she’ll be foolish – that’s the best thing she can be in this world, a beautiful little fool!”


The Great Gatsby remains one of the best-loved classics of American literature, beloved and widely read across multiple platforms (film, play adaptations, etc.). Additionally, its influence extends beyond just its time; readers continue to find new meaning and insight from this timeless work of art that captures imaginations across time and cultures.

About the Author

CJ grew up admiring books. His family owned a small bookstore throughout his early childhood, and he would spend weekends flipping through book after book, always sure to read the ones that looked the most interesting. Not much has changed since then, except now some of those interesting books he picks off the shelf were designed by his company!