Narayan first broke through with the help of Graham Greene who, upon reading Swaminathan and Tate, took it upon himself to work as Narayan’s agent for the book. He was also instrumental in changing the title to the more appropriate Swami and Friends, and in finding publishers for Narayan’s next few books.
Malgudi is a fictional, semi-urban town in southern India, conjured by Narayan. He created the town in September 1930, on Vijayadashami, an auspicious day to start new efforts and thus chosen for him by his grandmother. As he mentioned in a later interview to his biographers Susan and N. Ram, in his mind, he first saw a railway station, and slowly the name Malgudi came to him. The town was created with an impeccable historical record, dating to the Ramayana days when it was noted that Lord Rama passed through; it was also said that the Buddha visited the town during his travels. While Narayan never provided strict physical constraints for the town, he allowed it to form shape with events in the various stories, becoming a reference point for the future. Dr James M. Fennelly, a scholar of Narayan’s works, created a map of Malgudi based on the fictional descriptors of the town from the many books and stories.
Source: R. K. Narayan
The Bachelor of Arts was written by R. K. Narayan. It was published in 1937.