6 comments on “Warning Explicit Content: I Say (bleep) and (bleep) and (bleep bleep) a lot.

  1. Great post. I took on the same/similar topic a couple months ago. Though I have to say your argument is much better expressed than mine.
    I find that Stephen King said it best in his non-fiction book “On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft”. He wrote: “If you believe ‘take a shit’ would be considered inapropriate or offensive by your audience, feel free to say ‘John stopped long enough to move his bowels’ (or perhaps ‘John stopped long enough to “push”‘). I’m not trying to get you to talk dirty, only plain and direct. Remember that the basic rule of vocabulary is- use the first word that comes to mind, if it is apropriate and colorful.”
    I find that for me, the first word that usually comes to mind is the word I would use when speaking, and I curse- A LOT.
    I think basically it comes down to the writer’s comfort level with words labled as “curse words”, that and the words themselves being used in the appropriate way.
    I enjoy your blog, by the way. Just wanted to let you know I’m a fan.

    • Thanks for the comment! I’d love to read your take on this once I get a chance and see how you take this issue on. I think King’s advice to just say the first thing that comes to mind is quite sound. Especially when the word that comes to mind is punchy. I mean, we are essentially in the emotion making business. I think that a good story and good writing plucks nerves and makes them resonate. And it takes some strong language to do that sometimes.
      Very good to hear your take on this issue and I’m happy you enjoy my blog.
      Also a fun tip, cursing helps alleviate pain. So if you ever stub your toe and rattle out a string of curses that would make William Burroughs blush, then just say that it’s like taking an Advil.

      • I never knew cursing aleviates pain. Perfect excuse. =]
        And my post on the subject is a bit more emotinal and about my growing up with these words as a part of my parents vocabulary. It’s not nearly as well thought out or argued as yours. Mine’s a bit more of an energized ramble about my opinion.

  2. I have to agree. Sometimes cursing in writing is just necessary. I do it all over my fiction, but try to keep it in character of the story. Sometimes it’s necessary, sometimes it isn’t.

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