Tag Archive for: swearing

Noir at the Bar

by Bethany Maines

This week I’m engaging in a local Seattle event called Noir at the Bar.  There are several of these around the country—they’re a collection of live readings from crime writers with a few open mic slots at the end.  I don’t do crime exactly.  I’m more action-adventure / mystery. If you’re wondering about the distinction, I would say that the crime genre usually involves a higher body count and more depression and alcoholism.

A public reading is a difficult beast to master. The story or piece has to fit the time allotted and it has to be satisfying to the audience.  Just reading a chunk of my latest work in progress wouldn’t be helpful for the audience. There wouldn’t be enough set up and no conclusion.  It’s OK to leave the audience wanting more and pondering the deeper meaning.  Leaving them just plain confused and wondering what the point was is not acceptable.  Also, the piece has to be somewhat performed. Simply reading is more than a little bit boring, unless you have a Morgan Freeman voice.  In which case, congratulations, read whatever you want.  But I don’t sound remotely like Morgan Freeman, so I have to work a little harder.

For this event I’ve written a more crime oriented piece involving plastic couch covers, cupcakes and a husband who wishes he hadn’t popped home for a nooner.  It’s got some rather naughty words and I’m hoping I don’t stumble over them.  It’s my feeling that if you’re going to swear in public you should do it with authority.  Although, I have to admit that while dropping an F-bomb doesn’t scare me, but somehow the line about tampons has me intimidated.  Wish me luck!


Try out a crime-tinged adventure from Bethany Maines. 
Shark’s Instinct – $1.99 –  AmazonBarnes & Noble – KoboiBook

Fresh out of prison and fresh out of luck, twenty-something Shark wants back into The Organization. But when Geier, the mob boss with a cruel sense of humor, sends Shark to the suburbs to find out who’s been skimming his take, Shark realizes he’s going to need more than his gun and an attitude to succeed. With the clock ticking, Shark accepts the help of the mysterious teenage fixer, Peregrine Hays, and embarks on a scheme that could line his pockets, land him the girl and cement his reputation with the gang—if he makes it out alive.

is the author of the Carrie Mae Mystery Series, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her fourth degree black belt in karate, she can be found
chasing her daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel. You
can also catch up with her on YouTube,
Twitter and Facebook.

I Swear…

by Bethany Maines

The title of today’s blog is not facetious.  I do swear. 
Kind of a lot.
I try not to in public. 
Much like public displays of affection, I find it inelegant to be
assaulted by profanity that I’m not participating in.  I think keeping a lid on my foul mouthed habit
is only polite and try to reserve it for private situations and friends who
have known me long enough to not take offense. 
As a result, a few of my acquaintances have been surprised to find
themselves on the receiving end of a periodic f-bomb.  (Yes, I’m the person who should receive this paperweight
as a gift.) In the past curbing my tongue has not particularly onerous, but
since my child has moved into speaking and comprehending, you know, actual
words, life as a purveyor of profanity has become more difficult.  Now I can’t even swear in my own home?!  Word swaps and humming the Star Spangled
Banner do not really help.  (Son of a
goat monkey, keeping my swearing on the inside is hard!)
In most of my books, I’ve minimized the swearing to a solid “hell”
or “damn” because well, my grandmother likes to read my books.   But recently, I’ve begun working on a story
that moves my swearing habit to the forefront. 
Rather than really “messing some stuff up”, I am straight  “f***ing some s*** up” for a change.  And ooooh, does it feel good.  Ah profanity, how dost though trip lightly
off my off my keyboard and onto the page?  Very lightly indeed. 
Many comments on profanity seem to insist that profanity is
the crutch of mind unable to think of something else to say.  I completely disagree.  To correctly use profanity one must have an
understanding of language that allows you to use the f-word as a verb, a noun,
and an adjective. (Yes, it really can – see examples here). 

Will my completed manuscript stay chock full of profane
goodness?  I don’t know, but I’m sure as f*** interested to find out.
Bethany Maines is the author of the Carrie
Mae Mysteries
, Wild Waters, Tales
from the City of Destiny
and An
Unseen Current
You can also view the Carrie Mae youtube video
or catch up with her on Twitter and Facebook.