Interview with Richard Crasta

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Mangalore, a small South Indian town full of tall coconut trees, mangoes, cashew nuts, and with a church every mile or so. Churches and chapels were very important in my childhood. So were nuns and priests. My parents were away for a significant part of my childhood. Writing was a cure for my loneliness, it helped me escape into a fantasy world. Almost as soon as I could write full sentences, I started writing imaginary things. It culminated in a story about a John F. Kennedy character, a hero, on a horse, who went around conquering countries till, finally, the whole world was his empire.
When did you first start writing?
I was ten years old, or perhaps nine. But I really became serious about writing around 15 and 16, when I came across the novel "Herzog" by Saul Bellow, and had also read Somerset Maugham's "Of Human Bondage." I felt I had a story to tell. Writing of this sort, which was different from the story books I had read as a child, excited me.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
The freedom to write as I wanted to, without censorship. Censorship of content, or censorship of words: I have faced both. Magazines and newspapers have policies about what they will and will not publish. Even Penguin and one other major publisher wanted me to remove certain words or sections. The joy of instant publication: a sense of fulfillment.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
To share my laughter, wonder, happiness, my story, my experience, my creation, to reach out to readers in faraway lands, and to see beautiful words on a page.
What do your fans mean to you?
It matters that you have given joy to some stranger in a faraway land. Many of my readers have ended up becoming my friends. Also, fans who write reviews and share their joy with others make it possible for me to continue writing.
Who are your favorite authors?
Too many to name. Shakespeare, Dickens, Saul Bellow, Don DeLillo, Henry Miller, Vladimir Nabokov, James Joyce.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Walking, reading, meeting friends, seeing movies, watching people.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Hamlet, Lolita, Tropic of Cancer, One Hundred Years of Solitude, Invisible Man (Ralph Ellison). Because they are immensely good.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Coffee. Being out. Starting work. Sleep is boring!
Published 2013-08-29.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

What the Children Saw
By
Price: $9.99 USD. Words: 14,020. Language: English. Published: December 18, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Relationships and Family » Fatherhood
What did the children see? What did the young, impressionable children that he so loved, and who loved their father, see? This is the question asked by this book, and by a father to whom something bad happens. This is a tale of love, sex, power, Matriarchy, but mainly of children and fathers, and modern fatherhood. To quote a line: "Let us not, as the years pass, fear to tell the truth."
The Last Catholic Colony: Childhood and Coming of Age in Mangalore
By &
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 92,070. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2014. Category: Fiction » Anthologies » General
How do young boys come of age in the old-fashioned semi-Catholic town of Mangalore? By searching for answers, through curiosity, endless obsession, and the universal power of love. Two coming-of-age stories, one as Catholic as the Pope, another with a magical, Marquezian, Macondo-like setting, are woven together into this book of fiction and nonfiction set in the South Indian town of Mangalore.
Killing Me Softly: A Report from Benzo Land
By
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 20,110. Language: English. Published: October 20, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Healthcare issues
A personal testimony of accidental dependence on Benzodiazepines, a drug that kills ... softly, unnoticed, Will help you understand friends and dear ones, and the millions in the same boat. This book speaks for them and appeals to policy makers and the medical profession to work towards ensuring justice to victims and to behave more ethically.
Beauty Queens, Children and the Death of Sex
By
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 52,640. Language: English. Published: March 3, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Sex and Relationships  » Sex and culture
In this revised, expanded e-book edition of his controversial collection of personal and political essays, humor, and satire, the author of the celebrated novel "The Revised Kama Sutra" comments on a range of subjects, from India's sexual confusion to the colonization of the Indian mind. Arguing for true freedom for Indians and writers of Indian origin, he also discusses identity & nationalism.
What We All Need
By
Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 52,640. Language: English. Published: November 14, 2012. Category: Nonfiction » Sex and Relationships  » Sex and culture
“Sex is the most fun you can have without laughing,” said Woody Allen. But which do we need more, sex or laughter, and what is it that we ALL need? In this explosive anthology of literary, political, and sexy fiction and nonfiction, sex, laughter, politics, and public interest are blended into an unusual cocktail, subversive as well as thought-provoking.
Apocalypse Then . . . And Now: An Alternative View of 9/11
By
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 12,890. Language: English. Published: September 12, 2012. Category: Essay » Political
In this unique combined eyewitness account, thought diary, and monologue on the Twin Tower collapse on Sept. 11, 2001, the author asks: On one of the most momentous days in Twenty-first Century History, what were people really thinking? Were they all thinking the same thoughts as the pundits and the politicians? Were the bottom 10% thinking the same thoughts as the top 5%?
The Killing of an Author
By
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 74,200. Language: English. Published: April 29, 2012. Category: Nonfiction » Biography » Literary biography
The Killing of an Author has been described as a nonfiction publishing thriller having "a sense of humour from start to end." It is the true story of small town Indian boy pursuing an American Dream: to become a novelist. The very human story of his quixotic quest for freedom in the Land of the Free is funny as well as instructive for writers, editors, publishers, as well as the general readers.
Lord Bush of Iraq: or, The Jolly Nuker of Baghdad
By
Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 5,980. Language: English. Published: December 18, 2011. Category: Nonfiction » Politics and Current Affairs » World politics
Conned Dee and Donald Ducksfeld “discover” the Al Stinkeroo, Iraq’s megafartacious SWMD, and demand that Iraq be totally disarmed—every steel knife in the country to be confiscated and replaced with plastic knives supplied by the Unholy Bottom Corporation, formerly headed by Veep Dick Shinyhead. Black Humor and Anti-War Political Satire, About 7000 words.
Father, Rebel, Dreamer
By
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 23,470. Language: English. Published: June 4, 2011. Category: Nonfiction » Parenting » Divorce and children
Writers and artists who are fathers; terrorist mothers-in-law; how to face the stealing of your children (including your book-children); this eclectic book on fatherhood and Mangalore from the author of the celebrated novel "The Revised Kama Sutra" is full of surprises, passion, poignancy,
I Will Not Go the F**k to Sleep
By
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 27,270. Language: English. Published: June 4, 2011. Category: Nonfiction » Entertainment » Humor and satire
What if a child, asked to go the f**k to sleep by its father, could respond in adult language? What if 5000 Indian yogis simultaneously dropped hot coffee on their laps in 5000 McDonalds to balance India's budget? How about selling used nukes to help balance the budget deficit? This anthology of humor is by the father of 3 boys and one Inner Brat that refuses to go to sleep or to grow up.
Impressing the Whites: The New International Slavery
By
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 59,290. Language: English. Published: April 9, 2011. Category: Nonfiction » Social Science » Ethnic studies
In this comical, passionate, satirical, and sincere book, The White God delivers "The Fourteen Commandments of Impressing the Whites" to a brown "Moses." Inscribed on two coconuts, the Commandments sum up both the secrets of success for brown/colored writers, entrepreneurs, and artists, and the distortions caused by race politics and realities in the modern world of Obama.