I’ve been stuck on line one all week. I open my document (in my case, an Excel spreadsheet), read the first paragraph, and ponder. While I’m awaiting inspiration, I read my email, work on my writer’s group submittal, check the TV schedule. All the while trying to get in touch with my inner Twain.
It’s like waiting for Godot at some bus stop. I’ve started wondering if inspiration will ever arrive.
I thought my opening paragraph sounded good until I paid attention to it. Now, it sounds boring, like the type no one will read past. Conventional wisdom says cut out the first page/couple pages and start the book at that new point, in the middle of the action. Sure, you haven’t introduced characters or settings, but that can be done later.
So they say.
OK. I did that and, maybe it does sound better. Now I’m starting at a high-action point, a revelation that stuns everyone although it’s out of the blue without any of the background contained in the first several paragraphs.
Maybe that’s OK.
How do you-all figure out the opening to a book?