F. Scott Fitzgerald was a distant relative of Francis Scott Key, the author of the US national anthem. Born in 1896, he started writing just prior to WWI. He married Zelda Fitzgerald in 1920, and they were part of the expatriot scene in France during the 1920's.
He was an alcoholic and believed himself a failure at the time of his death in 1940.
Between 1945 and 1950, the true value of his works were recognized and he became one of America's foremost writers, well after his death.