I enjoy the blending of bio and fiction as well (I think I'll coin the term fictionography and trademark it :)
It seems Hemingway lends himself well to this sort of story telling because he could pretty much do it all. A man of action and a man of sensitivity and art and intellect. It makes it easy to drop him as a character into just about any situation and maintain a high degree of believability.
You couldn't say the same about Fitzgerald, let's say, or James Joyce, but Hemingway as character can pull off a wide range of plotting.
The year, 1956, you have chosen for your Hemingway character's sleuthing in Key West was quite the time in Hemingway's life. He completes his Africa Book by the end of February and makes plans for another trip to Africa - late August.
I am prompted to ask how much of Hemingway's ' inner life ' during this time makes it into your story.
I should read the book.
All the Best
I'm pleased to learn of your book! The concept reminds me of the late George Baxt's novels, which featured Golden Age movie stars as real-life detectives. The series included Carole Lombard and Clark Gable, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, and William Powell and Myrna Loy teaming up to solve "real" crimes in Hollywood. Papa would make a great protagonist, though I thought Cuba was his base of operations in '56, but with Hemingway being the globetrotter that he was, why not Key West?
And I just ordered a copy! You had me with "his eyes were like pissholes in the snow"!