1. Do Not Write Like You Fucking Talk

This is especially true if you speak like me and often describe bad situations as a “fucking clusterfuck of clusterfuckery,” which is an amazing expression I learned from my former boss, who has a Masters in Social Work and knows what she’s fucking talking about. Despite this, most editors will not find it literary as fuck. I do not know why. I would totally read a book like that.

2. Motherfucker Said What?

That said, your dialogue should be realistic. Be that creepy asshole in a coffee shop listening in to other people’s conversations. Notice they do not use the word “needn’t” as I have done in Tip #5. (This is also why you should not speak like you write, lest you sound like a douchebag.) Write it down and use that shit.

3. Do! Not! Use! Exclamation! Marks!

Honestly, I don’t know why the fuck this is a rule for being literary as fuck, but “everyone” seems to agree not to use exclamation marks (except for a rare occasion or two), so I’m passing this bullshit wisdom on. Also, avoid italicizing (as I did in Tip #2) or emboldening words to emphasize a point. That shit is annoying as fuck, not literary as fuck.

4. Why’d That Asshole Do That, Part I

Think about your characters and what the fuck motivates them. If there is only one piece of cheesecake left in the fridge, and your character really fucking loves cheesecake, is it plausible that she would stab her husband when he opens the refrigerator door and reaches for it knowing she damn well called dibs on it? Fuck yeah, probably.

5. Utilize Bad/Crazy Situations from Your Own Life
to Create Problems for Your Fucked Up Characters

Find primary sources, such as your old diaries or your medical records, especially if you underwent psychological testing in 1983 when you were seven years old, and you find the results at a filing cabinet in your parents’ house thirty years later. That shit is gold; you needn’t waste time creating this shit from scratch.

6. Why’d That Asshole Do That, Part II

A novel that’s literary as fuck needs some baseline plot, even if your character development is fucking amazing and you don’t believe in pedestrian bullshit, like plots. People appreciate a little fucking action. That is why even readers of books who are literary as fuck flock to superhero movies that have almost no character development at all.

7. That Shit Looks, Tastes, Smells, Sounds,
and Feels Like I Am Fucking There

Even with fucking stupendously well-developed characters and a baseline plot that is powering your novel, you need some good description to ensure it is literary as fuck. Use all your goddamn senses. I want to gaze at the off-white triangular slice of that goddamn cheesecake; taste the creaminess; smell the fresh strawberry topping; hear teeth as they scrape the metal tines of the silver fork; and brush my jeans off when a precious bite falls on the devastated character’s black velvet pants.

8. Chunk Shit Together Thematically to Form Chapters

Think about what actually makes some fucking sense to lump together. Sometimes there are giant fucking gaps in time within a chapter, and that’s fine as long as it’s sectioned properly and fucking on theme. Also, each chapter should have a part that moves shit forward.

9. What the Fuck Do I Call This Shit
So Someone Will Want to Publish It?

It will take you as long to find an enticing title for your literary as fuck novel as it does to write the entire fucking book. Accept that.

10. Show Some Fucking Respect for Women

Many agents and editors identify as women, and if all your female characters are bitches or sexualized objects or have no dialogue or only fucking talk about men, they may not find your novel appealing, no matter how literary as fuck you think it is. Verify that your novel passes the damn Bechdel test. If not, go back and edit the thing because it is probably lame as fuck.