Sep 18, 2009

Ask the Experts

If you read my last blog post, you will know I was having problems with the word bitch. Writing a children's novel about a young girl who enters dog shows and solves mysteries, I wasn't sure how to refer to the female dogs in the novel.

Now, I hang around dog shows and have entered a few with my own Miniature Schnauzer (a boy), I also have two female dogs. We've used the bitch word casually at home and my own children know what it means and don't think anything of the word, or so I thought.

I asked writers. I asked editors and publishers. I asked twitter and facebook. I got a lot of responses with varying opinions on whether it was appropriate to use the word in my novel.

Even Emily (my 11yr old) said I should just use the word because it is the proper word to use. I thought, maybe. I did a draft and asked her to read it out loud. All went well until she got to that word. Seems she can accept the word, but can't say it. That was all I needed to know I should leave the word out. I should have asked an expert. I should have asked an 11yr old.

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