Watching The Basketball Diaries...DiCaprio was a great actor from the beginning. How many people are that good from the start? Again, maybe acting isn't that difficult. It doesn't matter, DiCaprio is amazing in this at 20, 21? Jim Carroll was a junkie, a poet, an author, and was in a band. So New York.
I'm not too interested in reading books like this anymore, after you've read some Burroughs, Welsh and Bukowski, you're like, okay, it's hard being effed up all the time, I get it. You feel like an insect...got it.
That being said I think Naked Lunch is a masterpiece and almost totally incoherent. One of those rare reads where not just the plot, not just the tone, not just the content, but the format in which it is presented is so unique that it stands alone. American Psycho is in this category too. Completely unique.