More thoughts on David Oliver Relin’s tragic suicide

Building on yesterday’s post about David Relin’s suicide. The event haunts me.

First off, let me do what I should have done first off yesterday, in my initial flush of shock and surprise, which is offer my condolences to his friends and family for their great loss. For that omission, I am deeply sorry. What an unmitigated nightmare this episode must be for them.

Looking at news accounts this morning, like this one in The Los Angeles Times, it appears that Relin died more than two weeks ago. (Interestingly, someone named “wilde75oscar” appended a comment to the bottom of the LA Times story at 9:55 am, a handle I find remarkably similar to the one used by “Oscar Wilde” to comment on my yesterday’s post at 4:06 a.m. this morning.)

This tragedy haunts me because I know how vulnerable I am in my work to a nightmare unfolding similar to the one that plagued Relin. As a friend posted on the FB link to my post, “To have a book be as successful and admired as Three Cups of Tea, then discover, later, that you have been profoundly deceived and that said book is full of lies would be an emotional roller-coaster ride that would be hard for anyone to take.”

Joseph Conrad

I’m pretty sure I would find it unendurable.

Lord Jim comes instantly to mind.

And after making yesterday’s post, I noticed that December 3 was the 155th anniversary of Joseph Conrad’s birth.




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