Ruskin Bond writing three memoirs including one on his love life

Kolkata: Legendary children's author Ruskin Bond is writing his autobiography in three volumes, one of which will reveal why he did not marry.

Ruskin BondRuskin Bond. Pic/AFP

"I will write three memoirs. First one will be on my writing life, second one on my personal life, which includes my love life," Bond told said in an interview in Kolkata. The third book, he said would be on his 'invented life' - the life, which the writer would like to have. "I can tell a lot of tall stories. That book will probably be the most amusing," the 81-year-old bachelor, who lives with his adopted family in Landour near Mussoorie, said.

Although many of his stories are semi-autobiographical in nature, his first attempt at writing a full-fledged memoir was in 2000 when 'Scenes from a Writer's Life: A Memoir' was published. But, it covers only first few formative years of the Anglo-Indian's life till the age of 21 before his first book 'The Room on the Roof', which also has autobiographical elements, was published.

Born to a British Air Force personnel in Kasauli, he grew up in smaller towns of Jamnagar, Shimla and Dehradun. After staying for a few years in London, the Sahitya Akademi Award winner and Padma Bhushan winning writer came back to the country of his birth.

"I am extending that book now to include some of the things I had left out. And some of the things I see in a different perspective now. It will be ready in the next 3-4 months," said the author who was recently in the city to talk at the Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet.

Bond, known for works like 'The Blue Umbrella', 'Funny Side Up', 'Vagrants in the Valley', 'Delhi Is Not Far' and 'A Flight of Pigeons', has been maintaining a diary all his life, which would become the source of his memoirs. He concurrently works on 2-3 books at the same time.

Besides the autobiography, he is busy writing a mystery story, while another part of the famous 'Rusty' series would come out next year. "I am also writing a book of fun, which will have funny recipes for cakes, what to eat, what kids like, funny astrological predictions, for example. It will also have some anecdotes about funny things that have happened to me and others," the noted author said.

Penguin has just brought out a special 60th anniversary edition of the bestseller 'The Room on the Roof'. "I think its very intense because it was a novel about adolescence written by an adolescent. That is what makes it different. May be I don't have that type of intensity now. May be I am a slightly different kind of writer now," he said.

Over many editions, he said he has never changed a word of the book and retained all the mistakes. "It is immature in part, but that reflects the writer. And then people say since it was a writing by a boy, it has the natural wisdom of any young man," Bond said.

The first book is the favourite one of the author who has penned over 500 short stories, essays and novels. "I must read through it again. May be I can improve my writing," he signs off.

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