Tuesday, September 27, 2005
You Had Me At Hello
"Weak first lines greet us like a limp handshake." Donald Maass, Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook
Now we're talking novels, not the first hello from a potential partner... however... I know where your minds go sometimes :-)
A good first line in a novel or short story can draw us in, set a tone, make us feel something that compels us to continue reading the work.
That line draws us in to read the first page, first chapter, and so on. It could be the voice, the grammar (or lack thereof), the descriptors, or the question the first line poses. In my creative writing workshops, I do an exercise on first lines, which proves to be very fun and idea inspiring.
What first lines grabbed you? What books had you at hello? Or if you dare share, what first lines had you the moment you met that special someone?