"Vulgarity is no substitute for wit."
I'm going to take it one step further. "Profanity is no substitute for good writing."
I recently read five romantic suspense novels, sadly, none of which I would recommend based solely on the amount of profanity. Every single one contained the F word--and one novel several times per chapter. It was appalling, and completely unnecessary.
My teen years saw all the Mary Stewart, Victoria Holt, and romantic suspense novels I could find at the library. Sometimes I would raid my grandmother's Reader's Digest Condensed novels hunting for similar authors. They were brilliant. They had intrigue, murder, twists and turns, that spark between hero and heroine.
What didn't they have? Sexually explicit content. Profanity. Did that take away from the story? Not one bit. Does it add to the story? Rarely, and even then, it is no justification for randomly throwing it in there.
As a reader, I want writing to take me away, uplift me, even inspire me. I want to be able to find some 'keepers', books I can recommend to my friends and the world at large.
So, my writer friends, I challenge you: up your game. I will say it again, "Profanity is no substitute for good writing."
Write well my friends, write well.