Would this politically incorrect phrase bother you?

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Posted 2/2/2013 by TravelAgent in NSBR Board

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PeaNut 294,429
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Posted: 2/2/2013 1:20:07 AM
I'm editing a book manuscript this weekend that's a romantic comedy. As part of the plot, the hero goes to a hotel with his one-night-stand date, but changes his mind. To back out, he goes with the first thing that comes to mind: he's gay.

The date is depicted as an over-the-top biotch, and when she returns to the storyline a few chapters later, she walks in and yells over at him, "Hey, Tinkerbell!"

So, if you're the reader, does this reference bother you or is it just part of the book and you read right over it?


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Posted: 2/2/2013 1:31:20 AM
No, but I think it's a stupid plot device.

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PeaNut 172,235
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Posted: 2/2/2013 1:31:35 AM
Books (fiction) don't have to be PC in my opinion so I'd just see it as part of the book and carry on. No, it wouldn't worry me.

Today, I will be colouring outside the lines.

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PeaNut 294,429
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Posted: 2/2/2013 1:33:46 AM
Well, Lucy, we agree on that. Unfortunately, that's not my role to fix in this case.


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PeaNut 51,697
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Posted: 2/2/2013 3:00:46 AM
It's a fitting phrase for a b!tchy character to use. Doesn't offend me.

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PeaNut 18,334
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Posted: 2/2/2013 4:27:38 AM
It is a novel, not a trade journal or news piece. I think in a novel politically incorrect slurs are appropriate as character development for THAT particular character.

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Posted: 2/2/2013 4:32:57 AM
If it's in line with the character in a novel, I'd have no problem with that. I shudder to see the day when every fictional character must abide by pc rules...not very believable.

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Posted: 2/2/2013 5:55:29 AM
ITA with Lucy. And with you. But since you can't rewrite the book... the only thing that "bothers" me, if you can even call it that... using Tinkerbell as a slur sounds like something a man might say. Not a woman. Unless she's a manly kind of woman?


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Posted: 2/2/2013 5:59:59 AM
It's fine, but that storyline went out with "Three's Company."


PeaNut 562,204
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Posted: 2/2/2013 6:08:11 AM
Agree with the others--plot device sounds silly (not your problem though) and I would not expect my fictional characters to be pc. It would probably contribute to me disliking her, but it sounds like that's the point anyway, right?

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PeaNut 224,352
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Posted: 2/2/2013 6:12:06 AM
No, it would not. I have heard gay men refer to other gay men with far, far worse references.

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Posted: 2/2/2013 9:44:34 AM
It would affect my opinion of the character, not the book itself.


PeaNut 50,300
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Posted: 2/2/2013 10:14:56 AM
Nope it's a book.


PeaNut 364,981
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Posted: 2/2/2013 11:48:22 AM
Have you ever read a Carl Hiaasen novel?

There's no place for political correctness in a novel depicting real life... heck, I don't think there's a place for political correctness period.

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Posted: 2/2/2013 11:50:12 AM
It would not bother me in a book.
I might think the character was lame or the author not very accurate/ingenious (sounds like not great character/plot development from your description). And if it were used in a way that glorified/promoted the use, I wouldn't read the book and would feel uncomfortable.

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Posted: 2/2/2013 12:42:41 PM
I think it's fine because it's just an indication of the type of person that character is.

But I agree with everyone else about that particular plot device.

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Posted: 2/2/2013 12:50:53 PM
I'll go with "played out" and "uncreative", but whatever. It's fiction.

It's all just nonsense anyway!

PeaNut 97,456
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Posted: 2/2/2013 1:09:34 PM
Fictional characters say all kinds of un-PC things. Not a problem.

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PeaNut 294,429
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Posted: 2/2/2013 1:18:41 PM
Thanks everyone.

The pretty much validates my instincts. But since I tend to shrug off more than the next person, I wanted to make sure I wasn't being too easy-going on this issue. Where else could I turn to for such diversity? You all rock.


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