Here is the problem. My novel is based around actual events, and I wish to stick to them as much as possible. However a lot of the scenes are aimed at adults. The MCs though are 14, 14, 15, and 23. Hopefully maia stumbles across this thread. Should I make all the MCs adults? I have not read a lot of novels with teenagers as the MCs, and the ones I have read do not have adult themes. So I am thinking it is not a good idea to have my MCs be teenagers because my story has adult themes. But if I make them adults I will have to rethink a lot of the story, and it would be less true to the real events. The reason this is important to me, is I plan to try and get it published one day. It is a mainly a horror story. Would something like the Shinning have ever been published if the MCs had been teenagers instead of adults? Instead of adults going to take care of the Hotel, teenagers get trapped there during the winter, and all the same stuff happens to them. One of the teenage boys starts to go crazy and wants to kill the others. The reason I am using the Shinning is because my novel has a lot of whacked out scenes like that novel. Also I want to have a sex scene. Nothing erotic or anything. Actually I think I would be less graphic than the small sex scene in the Shinning. But how would a teenage sex scene go over? I guess because my intended audience is adults, I should make my MCs adults right? For those that have an understanding about getting a novel published, what do publishers think about cuss words in a horror novel? Rather what I mean to ask is how many cuss words do they allow for someone trying to publish their first novel? Do they mind the F word here and there? I imagine some publishing houses do not mind a lot of cussing, and others do.