Archive for June, 2012

Postscripts to Hemingway’s Island

Posted on: June 27th, 2012 by Eleanor Johnston No Comments

 1. On our partnership

After all, writing a book together is easier than hanging kitchen wallpaper.

2. Wayne and El,

I’ve had enough of postmodern griping, whatever post-modern means.

I have just read “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” for the hundredth time. It’s the story of our suicide. The woman gives birth and the man kills. The snows melt and the deer die.

See ya! Remember 42.

A friend, 2011 email

3. For months, our working title for this book was The War on Hemingway.

Topics unacceptable

Posted on: June 26th, 2012 by Wayne Fraser 4 Comments

I have always rejected the rule that there are two topics–politics and religion–that should not be discussed at a formal dinner. What about in a novel? If an author claims to have written a novel of ideas, it should offer insightful comments on politics and/or religion that intrigue and enlighten the reader. Hemingway’s Island deals with politics, particularly that of the 1950s; it’s focused on the era of the Red Scare in the USA and Communism in Cuba.

We could have (should have?) been able to handle religion as well. Cuba is ostensibly Roman Catholic, with evangelicals of all stripes claiming the conversion of multitudes. The problem is that the most vibrant and potentially dangerous belief system is Santeria that African slaves brought with them, a combination of their traditions and Christianity, with the latter at times only a keep-the-white-man happy veneer. What was Hemingway’s experience of religion? Perhaps another novel is required.

Imagining Hemingway as Character in Fiction

Posted on: June 22nd, 2012 by Wayne Fraser 10 Comments

Delivering our joint presentation on the process of creating our novel, Hemingway’s Island, was wonderful and exhilerating. The audience received it very well. We sold three copies right there and generated interest in other delegates. I gave a “reader’s copy” to Allie Baker who writes a blog on Hemingway, the Hemingway Project, that is very popular. She may do an interview with us and a review, so that will spread interest. And one of the Oak Parkers asked for a dozen copies to sell at the Hemingway museum in Oak Park. Much thanks to conference organizer Charlotte Ponder for asking us to talk about our creative experience.

Subterfuge at the Finca Vigia

Posted on: June 21st, 2012 by Wayne Fraser 14 Comments

My presentation on the further implications of Brasch and Sigman’s bibliography of Hemingway’s Library went very well this morning and was well received. It was an exhilarating and rewarding experience to stand and deliver the personal stories behind the creation of this book and the ongoing challenges to scholars to examine the influence of Hemingway’s reading on the development of his craft.

Tour of Horton Bay

Posted on: June 20th, 2012 by Wayne Fraser 5 Comments

Yesterday, on the tour to Horton Bay, through an unexpected near encounter with poison ivy, Eleanor & I were invited inside Pinehurst, the Dillworth home where Hemingway often stayed, and which served the chicken dinner for Ernest & Hadley’s wedding reception. All our group got to see the shed at the back of the house where EH often slept; there was even an old cot-bed leaning against the wall. The inside of the house had many small rooms, lovely wood flooring. Since we had been here about 10 years ago, we did not miss out on the group’s tour of the nearby bay and enjoyed this privileged entry into the house. Tonight we tour again, and it ends with a social time at the house next door, Shangra-la, where the champagne wedding reception took place on the lawn. Very exciting to step back in time, Midnight in Paris notwithstanding.

Up in Michigan

Posted on: June 17th, 2012 by Wayne Fraser 7 Comments
We arrived in Petoskey this afternoon after a lovely drive up from Midland. Rain went away and sun came out. We found our way to the Terrace Inn of 1911, small room but clean and quaint. We registered for the Hemingway conference and are now relaxing and cleaning up for the opening reception at the Perry Hotel. It all looks lovely. The conference takes place in Bay View, a collection of buildings like a summer campus and our hotel is adjacent to this park. So, easy access to all the sessions. We are happy and excited.
    Our website has gone live:
    Our novel, Hemingway’s Island, is officially launched. Give it a look.
All Bests, wf/eij


Posted on: June 6th, 2012 by admin No Comments

Eleanor Johnston and Wayne Fraser have written and published a novel about Ernest
Hemingway. Hemingway’s Island is now available for purchase on our website. You can
soon purchase a copy from and

At the International Hemingway conference in Petoskey, Michigan (June 2012) they
will make a joint presentation on the process and challenges of using Hemingway as a
character in their novel. As well, Wayne will present a paper on “Subterfuge at the Finca:
Further implications of Brasch and Sigman’s Hemingway’s Library,” which details the
challenges faced by these two academics in their efforts to catalogue all of Hemingway’s
9,000 books still in his home in Cuba.