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In conversation with Om Swami: The monk who writes for a living

Om Swami’s latest book, The Last Gambit, is his first non-fiction. He says the genre has allowed him to play with facts.

books Updated: Jun 08, 2017 13:15 IST
Medha Shri Dahiya
He became a millionaire in his 20s, only to renounce it all at 30.
He became a millionaire in his 20s, only to renounce it all at 30.

This best-selling author is not your conventional writer. Om Swami is a mystic, a monk, a siddha. He became a millionaire in his 20s, only to renounce it all at 30. Today, he lives in the Himalayan foothills, and helps people solve their problems — spiritual or mundane, and writes books.

The Last Gambit is his latest and first fiction. Having written six non-fiction books, he decided to venture into fiction writing because, “Fiction gives you scope to use your imagination”. “I have taken a vow of truth, so with non-fiction I could only write the truth. Sometimes you need to present ideas in a way that people will relate to, certain age groups might need to be told things in a different way and with different analogy,” says Om Swami about the book which is the story of a 14-year-old boy who goes on to become a Chess champ with the help of a mysterious teacher. The book imparts some truth about life in a non-didactic manner, has the element of mystery and serves complex ideas palatably.

Om Swami’s The Last Gambit is the story of a 14-year-old boy who goes on to become a Chess champ with the help of a mysterious teacher.

‘Why write at all?’ is a question he has been asked several times. The author of A Million Thoughts says , “I don’t want donations for my expenditures, whatever little they are. I write for a living. Also, don’t want to preach to a crowd. Writing is how I promote the truth, those who read my books are the ones who want to really know. I don’t want to be famous.”

Om Swami got a lot of mails addressed to the former Bigg Boss contestant Swami Om after the show.

On the mention of that word, we remind him of his namesake, Swami Om — a Bigg Boss contestant who is notorious for his acts. With his contagious calm, and peaceful smile, Om Swami answers, “I have heard of him. Our portal’s (omswami.com) admin told me that we received a lot of interesting mails addressed to the other Om Swami. I am happy that those who are really seeking me will only come to me, because if they type my name, the search engine will give them more options.”