Bardstardising Shakespeare


bastardise  ˈbɑːstədʌɪz,ˈbast-/ verb  1.  corrupt or debase (a language, art form, etc.), typically by adding new elements
Bardstardise 1. to corrupt and/or  improve upon the language and works of William Shakespeare
What might have been barred from the Bard’s work? 

In celebration of Shakespeare’s 400th anniversary, Goodreads asked six authors to write deleted scenes from some of Shakespeare’s plays.  Read their efforts here to be inspired to write your own.  Notice how they adhere to, but also break with, conventions.  This is often for comic effect.

Your turn.

Imagine a deleted scene from Shakespeare’s Macbeth.  Now write it.  Can you evoke the language and rhythm (iambic pentameter) of Shakespeare?

Consider how you might utilise:

  • setting and placement of scene (where in the narrative: eg. Act 1, Scene 8?)
  • characters, their status, their language (verse or prose?), what they know or don’t know yet, how they would address each other (‘dearest chuck’, ‘my lord’, ‘dark spirits’ etc)
  • A soliloquy or asides
  • key ideas and how to develop them: ambition, fear, inner conflict, deception…take your pick!
  • imagery and figurative language: how to lend power to your words and message (let’s face it, there’s more than a little Shakespeare in the dramatic language of say ‘Game of Thrones’etc)
  • foreshadowing and dramatic irony

Plan, write and edit it in a Word document or equivalent.  We will workshop your writing in class.  Finished copy and an accompanying written explanation of your authorial choices will be posted on the blog.

View the ‘Macbeth Creative’ assessment sheet (on Compass via the Resources tab) to remind yourself of the skills you need to demonstrate.  Or borrow your gran’s glasses to decipher the copy below:


Due date: Thursday 12 May

Questions? Post them as comments below and I will endeavour to answer them for the benefit of all.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s