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The Complete Handbook of Novel Writing, 3rd Edition by Writer's Digest Writer's Digest Editors

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Chapter Fifty-Nine

Patricia Cornwell

A Life of Crime

Jessica Strawser

To say that Patricia Cornwell is a force to be reckoned with—whether at a crime scene, in a forensics lab, at her keyboard, or on your bookshelf—is a grotesque understatement. Not only is the novelist touted as the world’s number one best-selling crime writer, she’s become a forensics consultant in her own right through the course of researching what she calls her “nonfiction fiction” series featuring medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta. A founding member of the National Forensic Academy and founder of the Virginia Institute of Forensic Science and Medicine, in addition to influential roles at other respected institutions, Cornwell is arguably as well known today for her books—a ...

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