Happy Publishing Anniversary, “On The Road”

From The Writer’s Almanac:

On The Road original Jack Kerouac’s beat classic “On the Road” was published on this date in 1957. It’s the mostly-true story of a cross-country hitchhiking trip Kerouac and his friend Neal Cassady took in the late 1940s. Legend — helped along by the author himself — holds that the book was the spontaneous product of a three-week writing frenzy. Actually, the book had been in the works for many years. But Kerouac did sit down and hammer out a first draft in three weeks, tuned into an all-night jazz station and powered by caffeine and other stimulants. Because he typed 100 words a minute, it annoyed him to have to load a new page all the time. He solved that problem by typing onto a roll of paper. The first draft of On the Road is measured in inches, rather than pages: 120 inches, to be exact. It should have been longer than that, but a dog ate the book’s original ending.

If you’ve never read “On The Road” you should give it a try; you might find yourself pulled into the world of Kerouac, lol.

You might also be interested in this post celebrating the birthday of Kerouac.


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