Literature loses one of its rarest voices

ChristopherKochChristopher Koch once described writing as an absurd occupation: ”All writers are obviously neurotic … For various reasons, writers retreat into an imaginary world because they find ordinary life rather difficult or boring or both.”

But it was an occupation he loved and to which he eventually devoted his life, one that came to an end early Monday morning in Hobart. He was 81 and had been diagnosed with cancer a few months before his last novel, Lost Voices, was published to critical acclaim a year ago. He lived for many years in Sydney and Asia, but in 2004, returned to Tasmania, where he said he felt at home.

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