William S. Burroughs Facts

William S. Burroughs Facts
William S. Burroughs was an American Beat Generation writer best known for his novel Naked Lunch, a look at the drug culture he was often involved in. He was born William Seward Burroughs II on February 5th, 1914 in St. Louis, Missouri to Laura Hammon Lee and Mortimer Perry Burroughs. William attended John Burroughs High School where his first published piece, an essay titled "Personal Magnetism" appeared in the John Burrows Review. He went on to a boarding school for children of wealthy parents, but soon left to finish high school in Missouri, and then he went on to Harvard University and graduated in 1936.
Interesting William S. Burroughs Facts:
William S. Burroughs enlisted in the United States Army in 1942 but was released after being deemed unfit due to mental issues.
William S. Burroughs moved to New York in 1944 and shared an apartment with Joan Vollmer Adams, Jack Kerouac and his wife Edie Parker.
William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac wrote a book together in 1945 titled And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks. The book went unpublished until 2008 when Grove Press and Penguin Books released it.
While living in New York William S. Burroughs became addicted to drugs and sold heroin to support his habit. He was arrested in 1946 for forging a prescription for narcotics.
In 1947 William S. Burroughs and Joan Vollmer Adams had a son together which they named William S. Burroughs Jr.
William S. Burroughs moved to Mexico with Joan, their son William, and Joan's daughter from a previous marriage.
While living in Mexico William killed Joan, his common-law wife, with a gun. He was arrested and charged.
William wrote the book Queer while awaiting trial in Mexico but fled to the U.S. before it occurred, resulting in a suspended two-year sentence.
William S. Burroughs' novel Junkie was almost complete when Joan was killed. It was published in 1953 by Ace Books.
In 1953 William S. Burroughs went to Rome, then on to Tangier, Morocco, where he began to write Interzone.
After returning to the U.S. briefly William returned to Tangier for four years, and he wrote his most famous book Naked Lunch during his time there.
William S. Burroughs often said that Joan's death was pivotal in his writing career. Had she not been killed by his gun he thought he would not have been so compelled to write. He had used his first gun when he was eight years old. Joan died because they were drinking and playing a game with the gun.
William Burroughs moved to various countries during his life, including England, Morocco, France, the United States. Italy, and Mexico.
William S. Burroughs published writing included novels, long fiction, non-fiction, letters, short stories, novellas, collections, collaborations, as well as recordings.
Movies and documentaries have been made about Burroughs' life. William also played the character Opium Jones in the 1966 film Chappaqua.
William S. Burroughs died on August 2nd, 1997 at the age of 83, in Lawrence, Kansas. He had a heart attack the day before and died from complications.

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