Copyediting Hamlet

Current Theme Song (aka what's playing on my ipod right now): Reign of the Septims by Jeremy Soule [Oblivion soundtrack].

I've grounded myself from the internet for the past two days so that I could be, you know, useful to society, and maybe get some writing done to boot. Guess how long I lasted? You're looking at it.

I will conquer it yet I say! Just not cold turkey (hey, which reminds me, tomorrow's FFF is going to be fantastic).

Now, have you ever wondered what would happen if some of the literary "greats" came under modern publishing practices? What about the great bard Shakespeare himself? No, not even he has been spared. Here is a glimpse at what might happen if "Hamlet" ever came under a modern copy editor's microscope:

To be, or not to be: {COMMENT: Weak, confusing opening. Is something missing here? The thought seems unfinished.} that is the question: {COMMENT: Indirect. Why not get right to your main point?} Should I exist?
Is it Whether 'tis nobler in the mind {COMMENT: Where else would it be noble?} to suffer endure
The slings pellets and arrows {COMMENT: Not parallel. A sling is a throwing device whereas an arrow is something thrown}of outrageous {Right word? Did you mean “raging”? or just “bad”?}fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea troop of troubles {This metaphor is just silly. How can one “take arms” against a “sea”??}

You can click here to see the whole transcript of the brutal gentle editing. I hope you get a chuckle out of like I did.

Look forward to more adventures next week, and you know, methinks it is time for another contest. Anyone in? :D


Kirthi said...

haha, it IS a brutal editing :D I've never read Hamlet, but I think I could say I like your version better. The comments are hilarious!

Frankie Diane Mallis said...

OMG I don't even think I can look, I love Hamlet!

Shannon Messenger said...

Wow-that is HILARIOUS. Now I don't feel QUITE as bad about all the notes I got from my CP. Thanks for sharing. :)