A Letter to Shakespeare
January 23, 1997
Stratford upon Avon
Dear Mr. Shakespeare
Just recently, I have read what it probably your most highly acclaimed works, Romeo and Juliet. I must give you credit for doing some great work with it, being that there are many people who enjoy it tremendously, however, I have a few problems with your story. I guess the main point that I am trying to stress, is that your story, yet good, is written to be understood by people from many centuries ago. Much of the script is written in old English, and it is very hard to understand and comprehend for people living today. I know that the setting for the story is several centuries ago, but I think that you could make a more revised version of the story for people today to read.
One part that really stuck out to me was the very famous "balcony scene". Much of the language here could use some revision. For example, when Juliet says, "Romeo, Romeo, where for art thou Romeo?", I think it would be much better if she simply said something to the affect of "Romeo, where are you?" since that is practically all she is saying. And at the end of the balcony scene, instead of Juliet saying "Parting is such sweet sorrow," although that is very dramatic, she could just say something like, "I wish you didn't have to go so soon."
Another part that I noticed was in the scene where Mercutio was insulting Tybalt, right before they fought in the streets of Verona. Mercutio had called Tybalt "prince of cats" since Tybalt was an ordinary name for house cats at that time. I think that it would be all right to keep this part, however you might want to think about changing Tybalt's name to something that is more common for cats today like Felix or even better, Whiskers, however that might not be a suitable name for a normal person. I think that in making these changes in your story, that it would make it much easier to read for people today, and I think that it might make school students who have to read it, like it even more.
You might even want to think about changing the names of the characters to something more modern, or even something just completely stupid so it would appeal to people even more. For example, you could change Romeo and Juliet to Cocaine Chris and Kitty or Josh The Trashman and Maud. I think that would capture the readers' attention much better than just a couple of 16th century names. You might also want to change your name since it is so long. You could make it something like Weird Wally Shaker or just change it to Unknown. That would be a lot easier to spell and remember. It would help a lot of people even more if you changed your place of residence. Stratford upon Avon is just to hard to remember sometimes. Today, Avon is cosmetics, not a place to live. You could change your address to House upon Hill or something really easy like that.
In doing this, I hope that I have given you some ideas on how to improve one of your greatest writings and a little bit of your personal information as well so that others can benefit from it and be able to appreciate you and your hard work even more. Don't just stop with this story though, you could use these suggestions on all of your writings. I hope that I haven't been a nag. Thank you very much for your time.