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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > March 2017 > Patricia


Tony Rossiter examines the pre-eminent exponent of forensic crime writing


‘America’s most chilling writer of crime fiction’ is how The Times has described her. Best known for her series of novels featuring medical examiner Dr Kay Scarpetta, her books have sold more than 100 million in 36 languages in more than 120 countries. In the league table of women writers, only JK Rowling is ahead of her. She has popularised forensic crime fiction almost single-handedly – the literary progenitor of television series such as CSI and Silent Witness._She has also written two other short series based, respectively, on a Boston detective and a South Carolina reporter – plus cookbooks, a children’s book and a book about Jack the Ripper. With Chaos (2016), Cornwell brought her total of Scarpetta novels to 25 – all of them hugely successful. How many writers have not only owned a Ferrari but also pilot their own helicopter

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Make this the month you make your dreams real and start becoming a writer in the Get Serious issue, with advice on: • How a change of attitude will help you, and the wider world, take your writing seriously • How to stay motivated past the difficult mid-novel slump • Money matters: Are you charging enough for your freelance writing? PLUS How to make sense of your royalty statements Cover star Jake Arnott tells us about finding the stories and characters that society overlooks and we explore the style and technique of forensic crime superstar Patricia Cornwell Get your work out there with opportunities to get published and competitions with more than £60,000 total prize money in 20 packed pages of Writers' News. All this plus our definitive guide to writing festivals, courses and other events for 2017