In his biography of John Steinbeck, Jackson Benson cites the reminiscence of a friend from the author’s early years:
He would suddenly put down the bowl of onions he was peeling for the great chili he used to make. “Hemingway,” he’d sneer, as though somebody had mentioned Hemingway, and he would get up and go over and take The Sun Also Rises from a bookshelf. Then, sighing with satisfaction, he would read aloud, intoning the celebrated dialogue in a deliberately flat voice, without cadence, without caesura, and naturally it sounded awful. Then, pursing his lips and nodding, he would close the book and slap it against his knee. “God damn it. I don’t understand why people think Hemingway can write dialogue.”
Have a great Thursday!