William S. Burroughs was a writer and a drug addict. He was good at one and not so good at the other. Why don’t you take a guess as to which he excelled at?
The book Naked Lunch is the ramblings of a heroin junkie. There is no story. There are no themes. Hell, there aren’t even any characters. Not really. Sure, people get mentioned here and there, but they don’t have through-lines, and there certainly isn’t anything remotely resembling a plot in which the people can function.
People have lauded Naked Lunch as a literary masterpiece. I’m sorry, but, no, it’s a piece of shit. I’ve spoken with plenty of people high on shit. They all ramble like Burroughs. Perhaps not quite as uniquely, but there is commonality between them.
The only reason this book is even considered “literature” (and I use that term loosely) is because there’s nothing else like it. If literary critics got a chance to sit down and chat with some real junkies high on heroin or cocaine or whatever, they’d soon see that Burroughs is just another junkie, albeit one with a typewriter.