I just finished reading ‘The High Window’ again. Raymond Chandler has such a great style of writing, I envy him. Chandler was British, and some of this shows through; his Marlowe character is definitely a knight-errant. Now Dashiell Hammett wrote ‘The Maltese Falcon,’ which starred Humphrey Bogart, but the way the Marlowe character talks in ‘High Window,’ you can almost hear Bogart’s voice. Both these authors wrote at a different time and for a different audience, however they still had tough heroes.
We have gone through so much incivility and so much Jerry Springer type hostility lately, that it is hard to reconcile the tough characters with their rather innocuous language. I mean, Marlowe does not swear!
I am afraid that my books do use swear words, but again, I am writing at a different time and for a different audience. I just hope my craft can stand scrutiny at some time in the future.