“There are two ways of meeting difficulties: you alter the difficulties or you alter yourself meeting them.” – Phyllis Bottome
Born on this date in 1884, Phyllis Forbes Dennis was a British novelist and short story writer who wrote under her birth name, Phyllis Bottome.
Primarily a mystery writer, she penned some 35 novels and many dozens of short stories over a nearly 60 year writing career, starting with her first book at age 17. After marrying, she and her husband were part of the British diplomatic corps, although his work was mainly through MI-6, the spy division made famous as the parent organization of the fictional James Bond.
It was great “grist for the writing mill,” she once noted. Four of her books – Private Worlds, The Mortal Storm, Danger Signal, and The Heart of a Child – were adapted to film. In addition to fiction she also wrote a highly regarded biography of psychologist Alfred Adler. She died in 1963 and her husband bequeathed a large collection of her papers and correspondence to The British Library.
“Truth, though it has many disadvantages, is at least changeless,” Bottome famously said. “You can always find it where you left it.”
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