On 27th March 1922 in the village of Bitton, Gloucestershire, Ronald Gordon King-Smith was born. He is better known by his pen name Dick King-Smith, prolific writer of children’s stories, most famously The Sheep Pig (UK) or Babe the Gallant Pig (US).
After serving with the Grenadier Guards in Italy during the Second World War, he became a farmer for 20 years before turning to teaching and writing. His first book was published in 1978, called The Fox Busters. He went on to write over a hundred books.
Some lovely quotes by him:
From his books:
“That’ll do, Pig. That’ll do.”
― Dick King-Smith, The Sheep Pig
“Patience is a virtue,
Virtue is a grace.
Grace is a little girl
Who would not wash her face.”
― Dick King-Smith, Lady Daisy
From the man himself:
“Much as I love ‘The Wind in the Willows’ and the works of Beatrix Potter, I never dress my animals in clothes. They behave as animals should behave, with the exception that they open their mouths and speak the queen’s English.”
“Writing my books is like handing out presents. Giving children pleasure gives you a wonderful sort of Father Christmassy feeling.”
“One of the nicest things was that the actor who played Farmer Hogget on-screen was the image of the man I had in my head eight or nine years before, right down to the last eyelash.”
“The single nicest thing I think about my success is not the critical acclaim or the money – it’s the tens of thousands of letters I get from children all over the world.”