Well, I tried.
For years I told myself I would read Naked Lunch, an account of the years that Beat writer, William S. Burroughs, spent as a heroin addict. Naked Lunch is sort of his 44-Magnum Opus; a book that while probably recognized by millions, has likely been read in its entirety by a only a few. Why? Because it makes no fucking sense.
The idea of it, as Burroughs writes in his introduction, sounds incredibly intriguing. To wit:
“I awoke from The Sickness at the age of forty-five, calm and sane, and in reasonably good health except for a weakened liver and the look of borrowed flesh common to all who survive The Sickness. Most survivors do not remember the delirium in detail. I apparently took detailed notes on sickness and delirium. I have no precise memory of writing the notes, which have now been published under the title Naked Lunch.”
Sounds good, right? Wrong. I got about 25 pages into this rambling, incoherent junk journal and wrote it off. Sorry Bill. Guess I’m a sucker for coherency and at least a somewhat linear plot.
Interestingly enough, Naked Lunch was voted one of the 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005 by Time Magazine, so maybe I’m just a dolt.