Is your bit part in Saat Khoon Maaf the beginning of a film career?
Definitely not. At 77, I’m not going to launch into films. Besides, no one has asked me to.
You have spent 60 years as a writer—what have you learnt?
Probably fat all. I am more impatient now and seldom revise and my style hasn’t changed.
You were very ambitious when you started at 17. What happened?
One has to be ambitious to start writing. But over the years you learn to accept that you are not the best. I enjoy writing; that’s enough.
Don’t you want to write that Big Book before you die?
If I set out to write War And Peace or A Suitable Boy, I’d be miserable. Even as a boy I was better at the short races. At a marathon, I’d disappear at the nearest bhuttawallah.
You live in Mussoorie. Don’t you miss the literary stimulation a large city provides?