Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Those were the days

From: Juri Nummelin (
Date: 08 Sep 2000

On Thu, 7 Sep 2000, Kevin Burton Smith wrote:

> Doesn't Marlowe at one point say something like "He snarled and
> called me something nasty." Would that sentence really have been
> better if Chandler had written: "He called me a motherfucking
> asshole."

As an icon of its time, yes, it might have been better, but only if the immediate context is good enough, which leads me to the following...

> This issue never really bothered me before, but as a fiction editor
> for my site for the last few years, I've seen some pretty poor
> writing, tarted up with "fuck you's" and "cocksucker's", and enough
> misogyny, racism, ignorance and just plain hatred to make you despair
> for the whole planet.
> Were the actual stories any good, it might be different. But they're
> not.

So, it's still the point of whether fiction is good or bad. It's not the words, it's what you make with them.


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