This is from December 2008, and I didn't find it until just now. It's a good one, and it's going to be a bad day for me when he eventually kicks down the door to heaven. It seems like he's winding it up for one last good book. He's one of two or three writers that have made me, for better or worse.
Harry Crews is one of the most original and important living American novelists there is. He was born the son of sharecroppers in Georgia in 1935. He served as a marine during the Korean War and since then he’s had just about every job a man might have to take in his lifetime—from working in a cigar factory all the way up (or maybe down) to teaching creative writing.
His books are bitterly funny and expertly observed shots of fiction taken straight out of his own life. He can outfight, outfuck, outwrite, and outthink anyone from the entire generation of little boys that came after him, and he’s still kicking today. Harry is down there right now in his secret hideout in Florida as you read this, and he’s working away on a new novel. He says it might be his last because he’s sick. But we don’t know. There might never have been a human being who combines smart and tough as perfectly as Harry Crews does, and we wouldn’t be surprised if he’s still cranking out his amazing books when we’re all old and gray too.
Vice: Hey Harry. Is this still a good time to talk?
Harry Crews: We’re supposed to do this now?
I think we said that I would just give you a try on the phone today and see what happened.
Morphine will fuck up whatever memory you may have left. I take it every four hours around the goddamned clock. So I know we said Friday afternoon but I thought we said one or two and, hell, it’s after three now. It doesn’t matter except, I don’t know if I told you or not, but I’m trying to finish one last novel. If God will give me this one, I’ll quit. But I didn’t leave it alone. I started working very early today and—listen, are you sure this is worth your fucking time?
Definitely. I just don’t want to climb up your ass.
You aren’t climbing up my ass, man. If you were bothering me I’d tell you. Last time we talked you said something like, “If I were where you are, last thing in the world I’d be worrying about was whether or not to give a fucking interview.”
Read the rest at Vice Magazine.