Pursuit as Happiness

An unknown and previously unpublished short story by Ernest Hemingway about hunting a giant marlin.

Woelf Dietrich
Jun 10 · 2 min read
Photo by Adityan Ramkumar on Unsplash

I have been dividing my time between researching Clark Ashton Smith for the next installment of “Writers of Past Renown” and writing articles for Medium and writing articles for paying markets while also reading five or six books simultaneously. Or rather, trying to, because in between all of these activities, I also have my kids that I need to feed and get to school and sports and listen to their tales of scholarly woe because if you know kids, you know they can’t stop talking. I have three, which means I have three energizer bunnies vying for my attention as they try to involve me in their daily experiments with life.

While I was juggling my very packed and entertaining schedule, I took a detour to the New Yorker to read a previously unknown and unpublished short story by Ernest Hemingway.

Pursuit As Happiness is an autobiographical tale about hunting for ‘the biggest goddamn marlin that ever swam in the ocean.’ Yes, it’s another marlin-fishing adventure. It’s less intense than Old Man and the Sea and rather lightweight in comparison but still a story well told in Hemingway’s unique voice. He writes in such a bare-boned fashion that I had to reread a sentence or two to make sure I did not read it wrong. There are no flowery descriptions, and yet the mood is clear and remarkably easy to feel, which is typical of Hemingway’s style.

So I read the story, and I enjoyed it, and although I do not often write about Hemingway nor is he a typical topic for my blog or here, I do enjoy his writing and wanted to share with you this new story.

You can read it at the New Yorker by clicking here.



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