When you submit a book on Book Cave, you certify on your honor that you have submitted an accurate rating. That means if you are submitting as a publisher, you must have someone submit the book who has actually read it. We have two language ratings for our books. One involves profanity (swearing/cuss words) and one involves crude humor/language (potty-type humor and “rough” words). This distinction is necessary because there are books with low profanity that also have high levels of crude language that still need to be accounted for in order to allow readers to make informed choices about what they read. See details for each kind of language below.
We do double check the profanity for every book submitted to us as the level of profanity is very important to many readers. Unfortunately, we have had issues with authors and publishers intentially submitting incorrect ratings, so we have to keep checking. It’s not rocket science, really, just do your best and don’t discount a profane word simply because you don’t think it’s that bad or because you are an atheist and don’t care about deity swears. Keep in mind that we are not trying to prevent swearing in books, we only want to rate books correctly so readers have a choice. If you don’t want to admit to having a certain amount of swearing, don’t write them in your book.
The most simple method for authors and publishers is to do an actual check on the book. You can easily search your manuscript and get a solid count that you can use on My Book Ratings and here on Book Cave for all your promotions.
Words that are considered swears on Book Cave. Any variation or combination are also considered swears:
Not considered swears on Book Cave:
The following “H-word” are swears:
Because none of these refer to an actual location that is visited or lived in by the characters, these are all considered swears.
Exceptions with the use of “H-word”
Sometime books have instances when this is not a swear. This is usually when it references a definite place where the characters actually visit or receive visitors from.
There are very few instances when the word God / Jesus / Christ etc. are NOT swears in novels. This will usually be in religious books where people discuss or pray to God (and it’s clear they’re praying and thinking about God, not just taking his name in vain), or in speculative fiction where gods/goddesses are characters. We came to this conclusion after talking with several religious publishers about the content they accept and readers who prefer no profanity in books. None of the below are prayers in the context of the books they were in. God wasn’t a character in the books, so we need to add it to our profanity count.
These are not Deity Swears
A word about Lord/Lordy:
Many people who choose not to read deity swears will also not appreciate the Lord/Lordy replacement. Thus, “good Lord, no” is still a swear but “Dear Lord, help me get through this day” would not be one. However, on Book Cave, we will not count “Lord” either way.
Potty humor and other crude words to be included in Crude Humor/Language:
Potty jokes and other crude words are not considered swears on Book Cave. However, these words should be reported on the content rating by choosing a level of “Crude Humor/Language.” Potty jokes, like those in many children’s books (talking about farts or peeing or bodily functions), are generally going to be the “mild” choice under crude humor and language.” These might still be read in a classroom setting as they are more humorous than offensive to most people. They would not contain the hard words listed below.
Other more serious crude words include more adult terminology, including body parts and words you probably wouldn’t use while meeting your future in-laws for the first time.
Example: if you choose the Moderate crude humor or language rating, that means the level is generally appropriate for teens but not for a four-year-old who would be better off with the Mild rating. Scenes with these words may not be great for reading aloud in a church-type setting but could possibly be read aloud in a high school classroom. The teens are definitely hearing them on a daily basis.
Below is not a full list of crude humor/language but are here to serve as examples.
If your book doesn’t include crude humor/language, then choose none. Remember that you will report your profanity contents on the profanity line. Happy promoting! Please email us if you have any questions.