I have written a manuscript “Baked Lunch” and I'm soliciting agents and publishers.
Brief Synopsis: I have written an update (2018) of the William Burroughs novel Naked Lunch. The manuscript has sex, drugs, and violence, which are clichés, when Burroughs wrote his novel these subjects were more controversial. We live in a more jaded age. The clichés mean that someone could read this manuscript while waiting for a plane in an airport and be reasonably entertained. People have shorter attention spans, we’re more distracted. I simply tried to write something I believe is marketable. Same titles from the same chapters as Burroughs novel, but the content is not the same.
(list of chapters redacted for space)
William Burroughs original novel was considered unpublishable because essentially it had no plot. The Chapter 22 Hauser and O'Brien did have a narrative arc, but the rest of the book was essentially a stream of consciousness. A better insight into a synopsis of the novel would be David Cronenberg who essentially re-wrote the entire plot in his screenplay when he did a film adaptation of the novel. But the movie did not follow the book at all and neither did I. I wrote the novel because I don’t particularly like Naked Lunch and thought I could do a better job of writing a novel about beat culture than Burroughs did. It’s subjective I admit, but I really gave it my best effort.
Bio: I am a retired English teacher who has been working in China for the last 15 years.
Thanks for your interest. I have had a professional edit the manuscript and I am confident there aren't any major errors in the manuscript. Approximate word count: 100,000. There are graphics in the manuscript.
You don't get to "update" other people's work and call it your own.The warranties and indemnities section of a publishing contract requires you warrant that the Work (the book) "is original."
You may think it is; you might even make the case that it is, but that doesn't matter. Any publishing house with something to lose in litigation (ie they have money; they're not running a printing press in their basement) is going to eschew publishing anything remotely like this.
And if you think publishing it yourself will solve that problem, the agent representing the Estate of William Burroughs will probably disabuse you of that pretty quickly.
And honestly, saying you can do a better job of writing a novel about beat culture that is now considered a classic, no matter what people thought of it when published, is an assessment better left to reviewers.