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Old 12-27-2014, 06:11 AM   #1
HarryT
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Recommendation: Read Agatha Christie's Autobiography!

I've just finished reading Agatha Christie's autobiography, and I think it should be considered essential reading for all aspiring authors. In particular, the part of the book where she describes the time in her life when her first husband left her for another woman, and she had to make the transition from being an amateur author who wrote books for enjoyment, to a professional author who wrote to make money in order to live, contains a great deal of excellent advice which every author could probably benefit from.

Highly recommended!
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:22 AM   #2
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Thanks for the recommendation, Harry. We have most of her books on the shelf, they are always a good read even when you already know whodunit. It should be interesting to find out how she got there.
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Old 12-27-2014, 10:56 AM   #3
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She also kept people guessing even in her auto-bio I understand. She wrote it some time before her death and (as I understand it) let people believe her unexplained disappearance (after her husband left her) would be explained in the auto-bio. Well then she died and her auto-bio was finally published, and not one mention of what happened during those days was included in the text. Mysterious til the end.


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Old 12-28-2014, 10:24 AM   #4
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I have a copy myself. A good read, but Agatha was always an intensely private woman, and that continued in the autobiography. What tipped her over the edge on the "disappearance" was that she was packing up the effects after her mother died, and at the same time her husband ran off with another woman. Too much at once.

Otherwise, very interesting. Educated at home, elderly father was a native of New York, who died when she was young; had her social coming out society "debut" in Cairo, could read and speak French. She was more cosmopolitan that most women of her era, enjoyed travel. She was in South Africa during the short-lived Rand Rebellion, and used the experience to good effect in "The Man in the Brown Suit", one of her better comic adventure novels.

She does describe how she went about writing her books, lots of planning and thought in notebooks, before settling down to write. Recommended to anyone who likes to read lives of authors. There is also a good biography, which fills in some of the gaps carefully glossed over by Agatha Christie in the autobiog.
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Old 12-28-2014, 05:08 PM   #5
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Who wrote the Biography Pulpmeister?
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Old 12-28-2014, 10:33 PM   #6
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From memory, Janet Morgan. I can't lay may hand on my copy to check, it's probably in the hands of my sister far away, who is a devout Aggie fan.
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Old 12-29-2014, 02:29 PM   #7
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I found a few biographies on her over at Amazon for Kindle not the one by Janet Morgan though. Amazon US She does have a Bio. of Agatha Christie but apparently not in Kindle format (at least not yet).
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Old 12-30-2014, 05:08 PM   #8
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Janet Morgan's bio of Agatha is a good one, and I give a big Amen to reading her own autobiography. Laura Thompson's is also really good; it's newer, and seems to have more access to papers.
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Old 01-07-2015, 06:51 PM   #9
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"Come Tell Me How You Live", her memoir as Agatha Christie Mallowan, is foolproof comfort reading for me, too. But not a lot about writing in it. (Or, for that matter, the unhappinesses of her second marriage. As I said, comfort reading.)
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Old 01-17-2015, 10:25 AM   #10
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Yes, I like that one too, just because I like Agatha's personality and mind.
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