- Dan Mallory has a history of fabricating major moments in his life, according to an exposé published in The New Yorker.
- According to the story, Mallory falsely told people he earned a doctorate at England’s Oxford University, that his mother and brother had died and that he had brain cancer.
- He has since apologised for the fabrications, and said he told people he had brain cancer to hide the fact that the had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
Best-selling author Dan Mallory claims he faked having brain cancer in an attempt to cover up his bipolar illness, according an expose in The New Yorker.
Mallory, whose “The Woman in the Window” is becoming a major motion picture starring Amy Adams, Julianne Moore, and Gary Oldman, has a history of fabricating major moments in his life, according to The New Yorker’s Ian Parker.
“According to many people who know him, Mallory has a history of imposture, and of duping people with false stories about disease and death,” Parker wrote. “Long before he wrote fiction professionally, Mallory was experimenting with gothic personal fictions, apparently designed to get attention, bring him advancement, or to explain away failings.”
Fabrications included claiming to have earned a doctorate at England’s Oxford University, telling people his mother and brother had died, and that he had brain cancer. Mallory is believed to have spent months impersonating his brother Jake over email, in order to share updates on his brother’s cancer treatments and recovery.
In response to the New Yorker article, Mallory said he perpetrated a cancer diagnosis to cover up his bipolar diagnosis because he was “utterly terrified of what people might think.”
“It is the case that on numerous occasions in the past, I have stated, implied, or allowed others to believe that I was afflicted with a physical malady instead of a psychological one: cancer, specifically,” he said. “My mother battled aggressive breast cancer starting when I was a teenager; it was the formative experience of my adolescent life, synonymous with pain and panic. I felt intensely ashamed of my psychological struggles-they were my scariest, most sensitive secret.”
Mallory apologised for the fabrications he had told other people throughout his life.
“I’m sorry to have taken, or be seen to have taken, advantage of anyone’s goodwill, however desperate the circumstances; that was never the goal,” he said.
The film based on Mallory’s novel, which was written under the pseudonym A.J. Finn, is being released in October.
The book has sold more than 2 million copies, according to ABC News Australia.
In 2009, Mallory, then in his early 30s, became an executive editor at the publishing company William Morrow, where he earned about $US200,000 a year, according to The New Yorker.
The starting salary for entry-level positions in publishing at the time were around $US27,000, Vox reported.
William and Morrow said in a statement to The New Yorker: “We don’t comment on the personal lives of our employees or authors. Professionally, Dan was a highly valued editor, and the publication of ‘The Woman in the Window’ – a #1 New York Times bestseller out of the gate, and the bestselling debut novel of 2018 – speaks for itself.”
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