I live in India.
And the stories I write don't want to.
The thing is, as you all might already know, my country has an extremely- excessively, perhaps- rich cultural and historical heritage. It's imbued in each and every part of our daily life in some capacity or the other, and the Indian subcontinent has a very particular flavor when it comes to the people here and the places here. It's different from the first world, and proudly so. The stories we write, the movies we make, the music we compose all have a heavy root of 'Indianness' in them (in terms of content, character, language, setting) and while we may be extremely erudite of external culture, all of art produced in our country chooses to remain sundered from it and exploit our own cultural bounty.
But the thing is, I don't really want to.
I want to be a fiction novelist. And growing up as a millennial, my exposure to world literature and cinema and music has naturally been much more varied and diverse than previous generations. So the style of stories I want to tell, and the kind of plots I want to cook up, are such that just won't fit in the Indian context. I'm not saying that the Indian audience wouldn't consume something like that- we have a rich market for international authors and artists- but while writers from places like Europe or the US may benefit from already hailing from countries which have already influenced the world's taste in modern literature, I don't.
I want to tell stories free from the cultural restrictions of my country- but the problem is that even a fantasy world would seem incongruous with 'unindian' names and 'foreign' mythical creatures coming from an Indian writer. I want to make it in this country, the one I live in. But the content and type of stories I want to write- very different from the mainstream writers/filmmakers of the current industry- feel like they won't fit in. I'm not saying we don't have good artists to boast of- filmmakers like Anurag Kashyap and writers like Amish Tripathi constantly push the boundary of what the Indian audiences can consume. But like I said! While their ideas and stories may be very new-age, they're still rooted heavily in India, stemming from Indian stories and settings and characters!
Be it a potboiler, or a noir style thriller, or a Bradbury style SF, I am constantly and continuously restricted by the tone/style of literature produced/consumed in my country. While American writers can without restriction cook up a diverse fantasy world with wild ideas and crazy conjurings and names (all rooted in American culture perhaps), I cannot really. Because it would seem out of place for an Indian writer of fiction.
Can someone help me figure out this dilemma?
EDIT: Okay, I'm just so overwhelmed by the complexity of the answers I've received here on my first question on SE. I've used this website previously too but am putting my own perspective out there for the first time so must thank everybody for their beautifully researched answers.
Now a little about myself for further context in case anybody else comes digging with the same quandary.
I'm a 19 year old from India who published a SF/Fantasy novel 2 years ago. That story involved Indian characters in Indian settings but were quickly whisked away to foreign arenas (ie different planets) where such cultural idiosyncrasies become irrelevant because well, you're a representative of all of Earth there, not just a country. So that's how I subverted my dilemma in that particular story. Meanwhile, I've also written a bunch of short stories/poems/pieces over the years which try to tackle this problem by giving characters unique names (which can't immediately be associated with ANY particular country/region/culture in the world) or placing them in settings free from national boundaries. So basically, that's the dilemma that plagues me often whenever I begin a new story, so I decided to pose the question here. Thanks so much for all the answers here, and I sure do have a lot of thinking to do in relation to this- it's not an easy one-size-fits-all resolution for sure!