Mystery Writer P. D. James Dies at 94

I don’t think writers choose the genre, the genre chooses us. I wrote out of the wish to create order out of disorder, the liking of a pattern.
–Interview with Jake Kerridge, The Telegraph, 26 Sep 2009

Phyllis Dorothy James, Baroness James of Holland Park, OBE, FRSA, FRSL (3 August 1920 – 27 November 2014).

One of my all time favorite mystery writers died on Saturday at an incredible age of ninety-four. Her writing was tenacious, gracious, and conscientious of the circle of morality. Her praiseworthy detective, Detective Inspector Adam Dalgliesh of Scotland Yard, was a clean-eyed poet. His quiet ways and determination lead the reader through pitfalls and meanders until the mystery was solved.

On The Official Web Site of P.D. James you can read her lessons on how to write a mystery.

In her words on writing:

“I get up early, make tea and settle down to about two hours writing. I have no special room, require only a comfortable chair, table or desk at the right height, and sufficient space for my dictionary and research material. I do, however, need to be completely alone. When my secretary arrives I dictate to her what I have written. She puts it on the computer and prints it out for editing and correcting.”

The article ends with:

Even though you might prefer getting a late start and typing for hours on a computer in a coffee shop, James proves that success relies on treating writing as a structured job. Just make sure you have a method you can stick to.

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