Cover Photo: Ernest Hemingway at the Dorchester Hotel, London, 1944/wikimedia commons
Ernest Hemingway at the Dorchester Hotel, London, 1944/wikimedia commons

Ernest Hemingway and Me: Reflections of an Insomniac Writer

“Insomnia is the bitter digestif to a long day of living.”

The Sun Also RisesWhat I find absolute and masterful in Hemingway’s style, many others I know find stark, plain, even sexist. But there is something about the plaintiveness in Hemingway’s prose that drew me in. It made me want to learn how to write.

Lack of sleep does funny things to a person. Two a.m. is when I begin to wildly calculate the hours I have left until my children start stirring and I am forced, against my will, to begin my day. Two a.m. is when I begin my own frantic decline into semi-madness. And I know, in the space where darkness lies heavy on my breast, that Hemingway and I are, in this weariest and most desperate way, alike.

*

Many must have it,

This is a clean and pleasant cafe. It is well lighted.

The light is very good and also, now, there are shadows of the leaves,

You should have killed yourself last week,

Up Northan old bar in Petoskey,

This bar is in one of his stories, You should read it. It's called “A Very Clean Place.” 

His mother was a tyrant, he often said so. And it was her house. He never went back there after his wedding night; he never saw Walloon Lake again.

never, ever be leaving her, even if this means things are over for good.

t even good enough to edit. I write it all out.

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Nicole Jankowski lives, writes and sleepwalks in Detroit. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, NPR, U.S. News and World Report and Upworthy. You can follow her on twitter @momof4istired. 

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