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Curse Words in Titles? What is With All of this Cursing?

When Did it Become Acceptable to Title Your Book with a Curse Word?

OK, I’m going on my soap box here: I’m tired of all of the vulgar language. As my friends can tell you, I too can curse like a drunken sailor, but I’m just not ready to title my books, speeches, or essays with dirty words.

I cruise through the bookstores (yes, they still exist) and Amazon and see:

When did this type of language become acceptable? I’m working with a client now and recommended that he eliminate questionable dirty words out of his book. I even went so far as to suggest he change “damn” to “darn” and “Oh My God” to “Oh My Gosh!”

Why? Because offending people isn’t my goal. I’m well aware that many folks see “taking the Lord’s name in vain” as a serious offense. If, I can just easily substitute another word, why wouldn’t I? Using innocuous language means no harm, no foul.

What do you think? Would you title your book with a 4-letter word? Share your experience in a comment at my blog.

What’s with all of the #cursing in #BookTitles? I’m ready to say stop, are you? Click To Tweet

To your sizzling success!


  1. On a related note, I’m curious what you think about referring to grown women as “girls” as in “girlboss.” I see this as very dangerous and further upholding the status quo of deminishing and marginalizing women.

    • I completely understand your point. And, I’ guilty too of referring to myself as “word girl.” Of course, I do it because it is a cool phrase that rhymes.

      I also believe that there is a HUGE difference when I do it vs. when men do it similar to how I can talk about my tribe (Jews), but other folks who aren’t Jewish can’t.

  2. I agree with Liz on cursing. If our standards are greater than expected we can never go wrong. Let’s differentiate ourselves by rising above it.

  3. I do curse yet controlled (majority of the time) and only with certain company. I would never title a book or speech with a curse word. My Toastmasters Club, while liberal, discourages cursing and forbids a few words. A paper or or speech trail of swearing is a poor legacy.

  4. I’m delighted to hear Toastmasters adheres to that code of ethics.

  5. I wouldn’t purchase a book with profane language in the title. If you put it on the cover then I’m to assume the rest of the book contains vulgar language. That’s not down to earth it’s offensive.

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