In my readings about writing, I came across several good points about how the beginning of your book is often the most important part–at least, if you intend to grab the attention of an editor, publisher or agent. I wondered what all my beginnings really looked like…and so I gathered them here for kicks. Would these beginnings make you, as a reader, want to keep reading? I welcome all comments.
The openings (first sentences/paragraphs) of my books.
“Sully’s, on South Prospect, was the quintessential biker-bar, complete with hefty, leather-clad Harley worshippers, and stringy-haired heroin-addicted women who made the rounds among the bikers. Its decor was decidedly Medieval Garage Sale, with a dose of Americana thrown in. An old motorcycle carcass dangled from the vaulted section of the beamed ceiling, and the wood plank floors were littered with butts, scarred by bottle caps and splattered with homogenized bodily fluids. The only light to be had was from neon, dying sconces, and lit cigarettes. Various medieval swords perched on each wall, reminiscent of the times of Beowulf and Fire Dragons on the Barrow.” ~Achilles Forjan
“Early September rain slanted onto his shoulders as he stepped off the bus in Colorado Springs. Today, he would be returning to the house his mother left him. His lawyer had arranged the house to be rented until his release, so unlike most ex-cons, he wouldn’t be checking into the YMCA. To-morrow, he’d go visit his cousin, who had promised him a job on his construction crew. The next day, he’d begin his surveillance on the cop. He believed the adage that revenge was a dish best served cold. He’d had five long years to think about it, and now that he was here, he wanted to focus on ways to serve that dish.” ~Another Justice
“While throwing the paper in the paved, pristine driveway, I glanced up and saw the ghostly vestige moving away from the tiny garden. The vision circled the wrought-iron bench and moved fluidly across the lawn toward my Falcon. The filmy fabric of her white peignoir billowed along behind her. She bent to retrieve yesterday’s newspaper, and I was immediately taken with her beauty, though shadows and shy moonlight hid the woman’s features; that kind of beauty needed no illumination to be obvious.” ~ Armchair Detective
“Blue Spruce shouldered clumps of unsullied snow along the icy driveway leading to the secluded brick and cedar house atop Red Mountain. The dream faded, as the dreamer began the process of lifting heavy lids. Eyes focusing, she saw the blond woman standing over her in an apron blotted with a myriad of colors, liberated from the twisted tubes onto her palette. She reached out with the camel hair brush and dotted her lover’s nose with Cadmium red.” ~As You Were
“Ignorance really is bliss, sometimes. She had been blissful these last few months, enjoying the company of a man who reminded her how lonely she’d been. It didn’t hurt that he was also handsome, charming and stinking rich.” ~ Baggage
“I have always been a seeker. I am forever trying to find where I fit in the world, and though I’ve made great strides in that regard, I have come to a crossroads (pardon the cliche). My beliefs about religion, spirituality and all things related have been sorely tested and now I have embarked on a quest for answers. I spend a good deal of time studying about it, and this book is about that personal journey.” ~Supernatural Hypocrisy: The Cognitive Dissonance of a God Cosmology
“Any Lesbian who is currently single knows that it’s often a great deal less romantic to be unattached than the media would have us believe. Many of us would love to hang out with the kinds of women we see on the L-Word, yet in the Lesbian Community, this is often not an option. Sophisticated, feminine lesbians are simply not the norm, overall. Most of the actresses who play those roles are in fact, heterosexual. I have frequently been chagrined by this. In all of Hollywood, they could not find a cast of feminine, sophisticated lesbians to play those roles? In this case, it seems that art does not imitate life. It warrants consideration.” ~ISO (In Search Of): The Art of Dating, Relationships, & Sex for the Discerning Lesbian
“Micah believed wholeheartedly in the law of Karma, which, when you peel away the spiritual dogma, is merely the scientific law of cause and effect. This was why she could not make sense of the insipid morass of misfortune that her life had become. The degree of bad luck seemed to suggest that she had perpetrated some atrocity against humanity. Yet she felt wholly victimized. All she had done was try to kick her life into gear. She had become lazy and without direction. She had become fat. She was drifting on a sea of whateverness.” ~ Plethora
“If you push your luck, expect it to push back. That’s what my Grandma Beasley used to say. And she was right. I had it illustrated to me ten days ago, and again on this frigid October night in the middle of Nowhere, Kansas.” ~Quintessence
“If I still like dick, does that mean I cannot be a lesbian? Rachel struggled with that question. She shifted the Jaguar, relishing the feel of the gear knob in her hand, and imagined how it would feel inside her. Was the only discerning element strictly about who the dick was attached to? To WHOM the dick was attached, she corrected herself. Damn. Even in her erotic musings, she could not deny the academic portions of her identity. ” ~ A Random Act of Blindness
“Cornelius paused with vermilion loaded up on his brush, about to make a bold swath across the canvas, when he noticed Daelah. Placing the loaded brush in his teeth, he reached down and readjusted the position of his wheelchair so he could see her better. At the end of the long corridor leading to the kitchen, she stood at the foot of the stairs, looking up at the ceiling, and down at her hands, and touching her own face.” ~ Somewhere Else