Books

Bad Literature Gets A Make-Over In 50 Shaded Poems

Living in a society which is driven by pop culture, it can be really hard to find originality sometimes. With so many reboots, remakes and reimaginings (I totally recommend this one btw), one can become easily overwhelmed and bored.

When 50 Shades of Grey took the world by storm I, like many others, was feeling pretty disillusioned by it all. On one hand, it feels bad to downplay one woman’s phenomenal success. But on the other, it’s incredibly frustrating seeing problematic media hailed. I could write about everything that is wrong with 50 Shades, but I want to show you something really cool instead.

I was in the tub, taking part in a Twitter chat and searching the ‘feminism’ tag on Instagram, when I stumbled upon the work of Cassy Fry. Cassy is an indie writer and creative blogger from the South East of England. She is currently chasing her dream career of being a professional writer by… just doing it. And I love that.

cassy

Cassy’s art stood out immediately, especially 50 Shaded Poems. Now *this* is a reimagining (of sorts) that I can get behind. Instead of completely trashing the franchise, Cassy has made beautiful and inspiring poetry from it. How has she done this you ask? Through the art of blackout poetry.

Blackout poetry is poetry made by eliminating the words in a text with a permanent marker, leaving behind only a few selected words to make a poem. After picking up a copy of Fifty Shades in a charity shop (for “the satisfying figure of 50 pence“), this is exactly what Cassy did!

“I looked through the pages chronologically. I quickly began to follow the plot while I was searching for striking and evocative words, so I soon swapped for just opening up to a random page.” – Cassy Fry

50 Shaded Poems with bookmark

The beauty of blackout poetry is how it can completely transform a piece of text into something extraordinary. I had never heard about this kind of poetry prior to 50 Shaded Poems and what a brilliant introduction it was!

“I was looking for uplifting messages and poetic imagery. What I love about blackout poetry is that it is transformative, you can uncover different narratives from the same words. The challenge of this project was to avoid the erotic and create something gently inspiring.” – Cassy Fry

I haven’t seen anything this clever in a long time and it definitely left me feeling inspired. There truly is beauty everywhere, we just have to look close enough. I’m going to leave you with my favourite part from the book:

Postcard Darling 

Paperback (print on demand via Blurb) £8.99
e-book (for ibooks via Blurb) for £2.99
PDF (available for Cassy’s  Patreon supporters to download)
50 Shaded Poems prints/postcards/badges/magnets are available from Cassy’s Etsy shop.

Read more about the project: Finding Inspiration In Fifty Shades Of Grey

 

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28 Comments

  1. Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy

    February 1, 2016 at 10:29 am

    I think it is great that she hasn’t slagged off 50 Shades, but instead put her efforts in to creating something great.

  2. Emma White (@TheRealSupermum)

    February 1, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    oh interesting I hated the whole argument over whether 50 shades was domestic violence since I spent 11 years in an abusive marriage it was draining to see it everywhere – I enjoyed the books but was disappointed wit the film. But I am a 50 shades fan regardless so will have to take a look at these poems

  3. Zoe L

    February 1, 2016 at 3:40 pm

    Nice to see some other efforts put in to create something fab.

  4. Diana Villa

    February 1, 2016 at 3:51 pm

    I love poems and more if they are romantic and sweet, lovely idea 😀

  5. Adi (@Nosferadi)

    February 1, 2016 at 4:18 pm

    That’s a very neat idea & I love how she created beautiful poems out of it!
    Just hope there’s no copyright problems with the original publisher and author involved because that would be a real bummer. 🙁

    VEGETARIAN COURTESYFACEBOOK

  6. Ana De Jesus

    February 1, 2016 at 6:08 pm

    How exciting, I have never heard of Blackout poetry but I think anything is better than reading 50 shades of grey again lol.

  7. Kitty Kaos (@kellykaos)

    February 1, 2016 at 6:15 pm

    I adore Cassy she is talent and lovely.I will be getting this as it is so important to support our fellow artists x

    Miss Kitty Kaos – Adventures Of A Riot Grrrl

  8. fashionandstylepolice

    February 1, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    Not a fan of 50 shades at all so not for me.

    1. Tara | C&CO.

      February 2, 2016 at 11:38 am

      But it’s nothing like 50 Shades. Cassy created something new from it!

  9. katiemeehann

    February 1, 2016 at 8:09 pm

    Oh my goodness, this is great. I LOVE it!!

  10. Rhian Westbury

    February 1, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    What an interesting thought about the 50 shades books and it’s good that Cassy has put her own spin on things x

  11. freddieandi

    February 1, 2016 at 8:41 pm

    That is brilliant! I too have a few problems with the books. I think the film was slightly better in certain areas but I think they portrayed BDSM in such a bad light.

    1. Tara | C&CO.

      February 2, 2016 at 11:38 am

      Yeah, it definitely wasn’t an accurate depiction of BDSM.

  12. Tori Gabriel

    February 1, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    This is a great idea. I am not a fan of Fifty Shades. To me it read like badly written fan fiction. I love how Cassy has remade it into something inspirational and beautiful. Not to be crass but who said you can’t polish a turd?

  13. Idaintyit

    February 1, 2016 at 10:59 pm

    What a gorgeous idea! I need to pick up a copy of this

  14. Rebecca Smith

    February 1, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    I love poetry but hadn’t heard of blackout poetry until now, may have to pick this up.

  15. Elizabeth

    February 2, 2016 at 7:06 am

    I love this idea! Great to have turned something negative into something beautiful and positive. 🙂

  16. secretplussizegoddess

    February 2, 2016 at 10:38 am

    Such a clever idea! I wasn’t a fan of the 50 shades book, but this looks intriguing, and such a positive spin on things.

  17. Jessica Ayun

    February 2, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Loeve your creativity here. transformation was not bad as long as you liked how it turned out. 😉

  18. Teresa at RockspringsCrafts

    February 2, 2016 at 11:47 am

    I have never heard of blackout poetry before but I love the idea. Next time I come across something so badly written it is almost unreadable I’ll have to try out this idea.

  19. Rachel

    February 2, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    I love this idea, I am off to look this out x

  20. Sarah Bailey

    February 2, 2016 at 3:36 pm

    What an absolutely amazing sounding book – now this something I might try reading myself. x

  21. Life as Mum

    February 2, 2016 at 4:12 pm

    Oh wow this sounds interesting. Looks great

  22. serenityyou

    February 2, 2016 at 5:49 pm

    This sounds really great. will have to look out for this book. Has for fifty shades of grey, I can’t comment has I have never read the books or watched the film

  23. leeshastarr

    February 2, 2016 at 10:55 pm

    Very creative and sounds pretty interesting. I’m not sure it’s really me but the ebook is pretty cheap so might be worth reading.

  24. WhatLauraLoves (@whatlauraloves)

    February 3, 2016 at 2:23 am

    Until I read your post, I hadnt heard of black out poetry. Quite creative really! xxx

  25. Liz Mays

    February 3, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    What an incredible idea! Blackout poetry is new to me, but I’ll certainly be following it now.

  26. whitnxy

    February 5, 2016 at 10:28 am

    ohh how inventive, haven’t read 50 shades but imagining it as blackout poetry sounds interesting!

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