When I was a journalist, and a very poor one at that - both literally and financially - the rule of thumb was that you NEVER received praise from your readers, you only ever received complaints. It was a good day at the office if it was a quiet one after one of your stories had appeared. This is also pretty true of the books - I get some nice e-mails, but generally there's not a huge amount of feedback. That is until I PREDICT A RIOT and the complaints started. Hundreds of them. My cardinal sin has been to remove the swearing and replace it with a lot of ********ing. This seems to have REALLY annoyed everyone because there's not a day goes by, STILL, when I don't receive half a dozen e-mails complaining about it: some of you just like to read naughty words, some of you resent having censorship imposed on you, some of you don't like being treated like naughty children. And all of you asking why the **** I did it, and if I've turned into some kind of ******* born again Christian or something. Now I've explained it before and I'll explain it again. The Lord is the One True Way and there's no need for ******* swearing.
Or.....I Predict A Riot originally appeared in serial form in the Belfast News Letter, which is a morning newspaper here in Northern Ireland. This meant that I couldn't be using my normal quota of very naughty words, or, if I did, I had to bleep them out. So I bleeped them out. And never a complaint over the whole year the serial appeared. It may be that we Northern prods are just a lot more God fearing that the rest of you heathens. So when it came time to do the book I thought I'd keep up the ****, and also had the thought that sometimes the bleeping can be funnier than the actual swear words themselves. It works on You've Been Framed. But as it turns out you all like your swear words. You miss them. They are such a part of your daily lives that you feel bereft when someone chooses not to use them.
So MAYBE in a future edition of the book I might put them all back in. But as that would mean re-setting virtually every page, I'm virtually certain my publishers aren't going to pay for it.
In the mean time, suitbably chastised, you can all look forward to my next novel, 'The Fucking Fuckers from Fuckville'.