Everyone get their flapper dresses ready, because, as GQ Magazine reminds us, the copyright on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby has ended. According to GQ, people are already preparing to publish their own takes, including everything from Gatsby and vampires, Gatsby porn, and books that expand on Fitzgerald’s characters, including Nghi Vo’s The Chosen and the Beautiful and Michael Farris Smith’s Nick.
Stanford Libraries states that the copyright on books lasts for the author’s entire life and an additional seventy years. While perhaps this isn’t the purpose of the time period, by the time the book becomes available for the public to produce spinoffs, the world would have greatly changed, bringing new interpretations of the original writing. Most likely anything written nowadays will not have the same historical context that Fitzgerald did when he wrote the novel, because we have foresight and many extra years of history to add.
Anyway, in honor of the end of Gatsby’s copyright, here are some ideas for Gatsby spinoffs. Some spoilers follow.
– A book from the point of view of whoever manages that red light Gatsby’s always gazing at. This person catches glimpses of these character’s lives from a distance and investigates.
– A detective tries to solve Gatsby’s death and uncovers a vast criminal empire run by Tom Buchanan
– A book about that painter guy that Nick meets at a party. This has nothing to do with The Great Gatsby, really, but I’m sure that guy has interesting things going on.
– Daisy and Mrs. Wilson both decide that Buchanan is a terrible person and leave him to marry each other.
– A book from the perspective of the shirts that Gatsby throws around. I’m not entirely sure what this book would entail, but I’m sure it could turn into something.
– The hotel staff at the location where all the characters argue witness many wealthy patrons going about strange business. Perhaps they also uncover a criminal empire.
– Gatsby as an epic poem, complete with knights and at least one dragon.
Perhaps enterprising people have already written these books. Who knows? (Excuse me while I go hunt them down to read) But if you’re a fan of the Great Gatsby, there’s probably a lot of material coming your way soon as people finally convert their Gatsby fanfiction into full-blown novels.