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The Killing of an Author [Kindle Edition]

Richard Crasta
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $12.95
Kindle Price: $4.99
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Book Description

This literary memoir about the world of publishing and literature in New York, London, and New Delhi is also the rare story of an Indian literary rebel who landed in America with an American Dream, demanding to be judged and treated according to the same standards as everyone else. It is a story in which famous persons such as Jackie Kennedy, Sonny Mehta, Salman Rushdie, John Irving, and Tim O'Brien play a part, but the wide range of issues treated in the book concern every writer, editor, and publisher, besides being a readable human story accessible to anyone with a decent command of the English language.

If you are a writer, this book could teach you to avoid dozens of mistakes--any single one of which could cost a thousand times the price of this book.

“Crasta has a sense of humour which he maintains from the start to the end. Funny, sad, and eye-opening. . . .We need more writers like him." --The Deccan Chronicle

"You are funny and delightful . . . and nowhere are you too heavy to carry. I've never read anyone like you. I laugh, I ache, I smile, I cry - but never close the book without that smile surfacing."--Sheelagh Grenon, Canada

This book made history, being possibly the only book reviewed by "Publishers Weekly" without ever being published in America. More details in the new, 2014 preface. More information at: http://www.richardcrasta.com

Around 70,000 words (220 pages).


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Crasta's 1993 comic novel The Revised Kama Sutra eventually received favorable reviews and was sold around the world, but its birth was a tortuous process that took a severe toll on its author. Crasta now runs his own press, Invisible Man, and in this memoir-cum exposé, he rails against both a perceived Indian elite and a seemingly politically correct but ultimately racist white Western publishing clique. Crasta recounts that after agent Lynn Nesbit and Knopf honcho Sonny Mehta ignored his absurdly offensive entreaties hawking his novel, he was finally published by Penguin India. However, his editor, pressured by his good friend Mehta, insisted he excise references to Jackie Kennedy. When Crasta refused, the publisher lost interest in publicizing or reprinting the book. Crasta also has other claims: that literary agent Scott Meredith scammed wannabe authors by charging them for evaluations; that Columbia MFA writing workshops attacked his self-esteem by degrading his subject matter; and that his psychiatrist ex-wife addicted him to Librium and Valium. Although similarly disgruntled writers may find validation, Crasta's unfocused, bitter, and ultimately self-indulgent rant tries for wit and parody but misses its mark, merely serving to prove that the author is his own worst enemy.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"Funny and delightful . . . and nowhere too heavy to carry. I've never read anyone like you. I laugh, I ache, I smile, I cry - but never close the book without that smile surfacing." --Sheelagh Grenon, Quebec City, Canada

'Killing of an Author' by Richard Crasta is a book full of exuberance. It is mesmerizing and bubbles with/exudes a great spirit that you hardly find inside any one book. It brings out heartache and tears, laughter and wanting. It showcases a part of you. To sum up it is a rare gem in a city of rocks. --mangalorean.com

Product Details

  • File Size: 513 KB
  • Print Length: 218 pages
  • Publisher: Invisible Man Press, New York; 2012 Edition edition (December 10, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003WQAX4M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,333,035 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Gift of Words August 7, 2010
Format:Kindle Edition
"I am still reading your book and doing so in installments as I want to absorb it. Besides, I'm enjoying it in such a way that I want my joy to stick to me. You are funny and delightful . . . and nowhere are you too heavy to carry. I've never read anyone like you. I laugh, I ache, I smile, I cry - but never close the book without that smile surfacing."
Sheelagh Grenon
Quebec City, Canada
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Honest, Entertaining, and Important March 31, 2014
By Z
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Well written and brutally honest analysis of himself, mistakes and all. Some excellent lessons for young writers, and some good history about the world of publishing, a world that is now changing as self-publishing has become a serious option to earn a living as a writer. The writing style is satirical at times, and his voice is very strong. The irony is that towards the end of the book Mr. Crasta laments that the years of prescription drug abuse has destroyed his ability to write well, but this book certainly proves he's still got the gift.

If you're reading this, Mr. Crasta, thanks for writing this, and don't stop writing. The muse may be fickle, but she is forgiving. She has not forsaken you yet.
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By Aashish
Format:Kindle Edition
Its a book that touches your innermost soul - with all its raw emotions, desires, pain, anguish and a feeling of injustice that any Indian author can experience at the world's publishing capital - New York. Its not a book - its an act of bravery, its a kick in the pants of the publishing lords and its an eye-opener for anyone who is awed by the glitter of the modern day institutions of the world, be it publishing world or another. Reading this book was a very different experience for me since I laughed, I cried, I was pained, I felt angry, I was shocked... but I smiled nevertheless and thanked the author many times in my heart for such an open and honest writing, for such a courageous book and ofcourse for such a gift of words that he has. Richard knows how to weave a magic with his words and always maintains a wonderful sense of humour in his books.

Its a book that is not to be missed and its not a surprise that it had to be self-published by the noted author. Who else would dare publish such a courageous book after all?
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3.0 out of 5 stars Lamentography October 5, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The book and the letters reminds me of sufi saint Mirza Ghalib's futile letters to the East Indian company officials, but unlike Richard Crasta, Ghalib didn't have Penguin India at that time. Mirza Ghalib turned lament into poetry, whereas Richard has no saintly abode to escape to, so poor Richard needs Valium tablets.
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More About the Author

Richard Crasta was born and raised Catholic in the South Indian town of Mangalore, also called the "Rome of the East." There, while fingering the rosary, he secretly fantasized about becoming the first Indian Pope, having observed that if priests dined well, possibly, the Pope ate even better. However, thanks to losing his religion at 16, he bartered his Papist dream for a new one: becoming a writer in America. Working briefly in the powerful Indian Administrative Service, he soon went to America on a student visa, and stayed, using a writing program at Columbia University as an excuse to brush shoulders with famous writers and the occasional Nobel Prizewinner. His first novel, "The Revised Kama Sutra," received wide critical acclaim, was described as "very funny" by Kurt Vonnegut, and has been published in ten countries and in seven languages.

Richard's books include fiction, nonfiction, essays, autobiography, humor, and satire, and have been described as "exuberant," "courageous," "hilarious," and "going where no Indian writer has gone before." He has been interviewed or written about in "The New York Times," BBC TV and radio, The Independent (UK), Indian national television channels, and elsewhere, including by one Indian newspaper that, while reviewing his second book, described him as the "Spokesman for the Male Libido."

A New Yorker for most of his adult life, father to three children, and member of PEN America, he now spends much of his time in Asia, working on his many books in progress. He gives much credit to American writers like Saul Bellow and Henry Miller, who fired his imagination as much as did Shakespeare and Charles Dickens at an earlier time. His Indian roots have always inspired him, and provided much of the material for his writings. His likes include a wide range of music from Mozart, the Beatles, Louis Armstrong, and Bob Dylan to a few rap songs.

You may write to him at rc@richardcrasta.com or visit his website, http://www.richardcrasta.com or http://www.richardcrasta.com/links

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