Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The non-schtupping clause

I've been having an interesting conversation with the editor of Abandoned Towers magazine, which publishes my Dark InSpectre series. In her writer's guidelines, there are two major rules. The first is no cursing. I find this somewhat bothersome since in a hardboiled detective series, characters do use foul language. It's how people really talk, and it makes the story harder hitting and more gritty if done correctly. I'm not talking the f word every other word, but that episode of Sponge Bob where he discovers cursing got it right, it can be a "sentence enhancer."

Nevertheless, the rule is not that big a deal and I don't find it terribly restrictive. The next one is the more significant problem: no depictions or content describing sex between a non-married couple (man and a woman). In the guidelines, this is called a non-traditional lifestyle. This may not be a problem for many stories, but it is for mine. It's just not realistic to think that in my series, the main character (who is not married) will never have sex with a woman. Maybe it wouldn't happen during the course of a particular story arc, but it's a series, it's going to happen. Readers would think it strange if it didn't.

I've been trying to explain this to my editor, and even described the particular circumstances leading up to it in the second story arc. I think she's on board with it, but I'll see when I actually get to that part and write the episode. So as of now it's undecided. Maybe Jack gets some, maybe he doesn't!

No comments:

Post a Comment