While editing chapter 12, I came upon a question: should drug use be included in the novel.
This is an interesting question. The drug usage in question isn't very dramatic or extreme. In fact it's as simple as a short scene where two individuals smoke a joint (marijuana cigarette) while talking amongst themselves.
It's not explicit drug usage such as using any of the extreme drugs. In fact, most wouldn't even call it a drug. Especially when it (marijuana) is perfectly legal in much of the world. So should it be included in a scene, however short it may be.
It is indeed something to weight upon. Many readers could careless about the scene, as it leads to a reason they are at a specific location in the first place where something key in the novel is discovered. Many readers would be glad that it is in there. As it in a sense, casualizes marijuana smoking and desensitizes it as a stigma. But that's what it is these days, a stigma. After a couple decades of propaganda against it, many won't see past the fact it is harmless and in fact is not a gateway to other drugs.
However, there are many that see it as a bad thing. It would take them out of the story and sidetrack them by their own discriminations. Losing their ability to relate to the protagonist by their own bias feelings on something he did in the story.
I guess that answers my question. It it would disturb the reader in anyway and it is not actually a part of the story, then it should be excluded.
♥ J.K. James