Nobel prize-winner Doris Lessing dead at 94

Nov. 17, 2013 at 11:00 AM

LONDON, Nov. 17 (UPI) -- Doris Lessing, the British Nobel Prize-winning author of "The Golden Notebook," died Sunday in her London home, her spokesman said. She was 94.

The cause of her death, in her sleep, wasn't reported.

The author of 54 works of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, operas, short stories and plays was the 11th woman and the oldest person to win the Nobel prize at the age of 88, Britain's The Guardian reported.

"I'm 88 years old and they can't give the Nobel to someone who's dead, so I think they were probably thinking they'd probably better give it to me now before I've popped off," Lessing said of her win in 2007.

The Swedish Academy, which awarded her the prize, called her "that epicist of the female experience, who with scepticism, fire and visionary power has subjected a divided civilization to scrutiny."

Lessing was born in Iran and grew up in Southern Rhodesia before moving to London after World War II with the manuscript for her first novel in her suitcase, "The Grass is Singing." It was published in 1950, the BBC reported.

Lessing is survived by a daughter and two granddaughters, The Telegraph said.

"She was a wonderful writer with a fascinating and original mind; it was a privilege to work for her and we shall miss her immensely," Lessing's long-time friend and agent said Sunday.

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