1. Published on Amazon? If you have a book, e-book, or audiobook available on Amazon.com, we'll promote it on WritingForums.org for free. Simply add your book to our Member Publications section. Add your book here or read the full announcement.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Dismiss Notice
  1. ToeKneeBlack

    ToeKneeBlack Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2014
    Messages:
    593
    Likes Received:
    208

    Curse Words

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by ToeKneeBlack, Jul 3, 2014.

    I'm writing a book aimed at 12+ year-olds, and I'm left wondering which swear / curse words are acceptable. I don't want this topic to dissolve into a list of words people approve or disapprove of, I just want to explain before I post something which may offend.

    So if you are easily offended, please do not read the following paragraph:

    Is the word "git" too offensive for a book aimed at 12 year-olds? It's set in the UK, so there are some people around who might say it in real life. To put it into context, one of my protagonists uses the word to describe an associate of his who betrayed him, as in, "That git ran off and hasn't contacted me since."
     
  2. thirdwind

    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Messages:
    7,380
    Likes Received:
    2,903
    Location:
    Boston
    Read some books aimed at your target audience and see what kind of language the authors used. That's really the best way for finding out this sort of thing.
     
    GingerCoffee likes this.
  3. Annalise_Azevedo

    Annalise_Azevedo Member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    Australia
    Since I'm from Australia, I always heard swearing ever since I could understand. Then it was worse when I was the youngest of my siblings, so they would start swearing when they were arguing with my mum's former partner. When I was twelve I was cursing off my little head but after I left that school I pretty much chilled down on the swearing which didn't come back until I was at least fourteen.

    But getting to the point, I think 'git' should be fine. But there's always one person that gets offended over something - even it's completely ridiculous. I've read stories set for preteens that say 'damn' or 'piss off'. Then again, I don't get so offended over swear words except for the constant use of the c-word.
     
  4. GingerCoffee

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,622
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    This link might be of some help in the US, not sure about the relevance in other countries:

    Banned Books Week: A Book List
    It includes lists of books that were banned by public schools. Fascinating stuff.
     
  5. Garball

    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Messages:
    2,846
    Likes Received:
    1,333
    Location:
    S'port, LA
    The word 'git' is used in Harry Potter, if that answers your question at all.
     
  6. S-wo

    S-wo Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2008
    Messages:
    337
    Likes Received:
    7
    I had no idea that git is a curse word or even a real word.
     
  7. ToeKneeBlack

    ToeKneeBlack Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2014
    Messages:
    593
    Likes Received:
    208
    Thanks, this should be a good indicator of what to avoid, though somebody somewhere will be offended no matter what I write. Can't please everyone. :)

    It's more of an insult. I guess I got this a bit wrong last night, as you don't, for example, stub your toe and shout "Git!", so it's not a curse word in that sense.
     
  8. Veo

    Veo Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2014
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    8
    E.g. in Half Bad, the author Sally Green does not use swear words, but instead says (for example) 'I shouted in anger and dropped some swear words in it'. In that book you can easily encounter the word 'shit' almost everywhere. And, for sure, in the last part, there's the F***! expression.
     
  9. Veo

    Veo Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2014
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    8
    And I wouldn't think that git is offensive--esp. for 12+ y.o.s
     
  10. ToeKneeBlack

    ToeKneeBlack Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2014
    Messages:
    593
    Likes Received:
    208
    There's a line of dialogue ending with "oh sh-", before their radio signal cuts to static. That's about as rude as it gets.
     
    Veo likes this.

Share This Page