“How is my great Squirrel Kingdom novel going?”, I hear you ask. Well, not very well at all. I have a serious case of writer’s block. In fact, I can’t even get my first line down. I mean, I want it to be perfect but it just hasn’t happened yet.
So I decided to seek inspiration by reading some of the award winning first lines of other authors. I thought I would share the writings of some of the winners of the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest from 2015 and 2016.
Knowing well the hand signals of his platoon leader, Private James Dawson silently dropped to the dirt, concealed and motionless for what seemed an eternity, a move that he had learned, coincidentally, from his parents whenever the Watchtower ladies would ring the doorbell. — Peter S. Bjorkman
The life of a mountain man like Jedediah Buckman is a simple one, a campfire to warm the person as well as the soul, a full moon to illuminate the forest as well as the mind, and game to nourish the body as well as the spirit, though one wonders how he could stomach beaver without mint jelly and a bold, young pinot noir. — John Hardi
When your home smells like a three-week-old buffalo carcass, your Mom is constantly being mistaken for a guy, and your sisters keep using your ears as their personal chew toys, life is no laughing matter—at least that’s how it seemed to Hubert, the baby Hyena. — Anna McDougald
She was like my ex-girlfriend Ashley, who’d stolen my car, broken my heart, murdered my father, robbed a bank, and set off a pipe bomb in Central Park—tall. — Rachel Nirenberg
Seeing how the victim’s body, or what remained of it, was wedged between the grill of the Peterbilt 389 and the bumper of the 2008 Cadillac Escalade EXT, officer “Dirk” Dirksen wondered why reporters always used the phrase “sandwiched” to describe such a scene since there was nothing appetizing about it, but still, he thought, they might have a point because some of this would probably end up on the front of his shirt. — Joel Phillips
“My name is Vangir,” the stout dwarf announced, “son of Valdir, son of Tolfdir, son of Torsson, heir to the dwarf kingdom of Darag-Vur, King of the Under-Folk, ring-giver, dragon-slayer, M.D., DDS. — Austin Stollhaus
If Vicky Walters had known that ordering an extra shot of espresso in her grande non-fat sugar free one pump raspberry syrup two pumps vanilla syrup soy latte that Wednesday would lead to her death and subsequent rebirth as a vampire, she probably would have at least gotten whipped cream.— MarIIgo Coffman
Here is my all time favorite;
Sex with Rachel after she turned fifty was like driving the last-place team on the last day of the Iditarod Dog Sled Race, the point no longer the ride but the finish, the difficulty not the speed but keeping all the parts moving in the right direction, not to mention all that irritating barking. — Dan Winters
And here is my attempt after being inspired by such fine writing;
Bob and Sue-ann had heard the loud sonic boom and when the strange bright lights appeared in the sky above them, they ran into the barn and hid, waiting in fearful anticipation with their nerves strung to the breaking point, when suddenly………nothing else happened.
Would you like to try your hand at literary greatness? Please leave your contribution in the comments for us all to enjoy. I may announce a winner and there may be a prize but I cannot confirm or deny this.