Revisions: Crafting a good 1st line

So I’m back and talking about the dreaded revision process.

As mentioned last month (or in August – man I’ve been gone awhile!), I am still revising my novel. I printed it out (which is still an amazing experience) and I am currently going through it page by page with my pen.

This is not the first set of revisions and I actually couldn’t tell you what set of revisions this is exactly (4th or 5th maybe). I mistakenly thought I would have nothing to scratch through but being that I have taken about 6 months away from this book, my eyes are REALLY clear.

One thing that I focused on with this round of revisions is my first sentence. From my internet searching, I have found these tidbits on first lines:

1. They should be shocking/funny/alarming (depending on the character).
2. They should pull you in.
3. They establish the voice.

To write the perfect first line, is like writing a twitter pitch – it can not be honed without a lot of practice. I literally typed my first line into a separate document and stared at it. I weighed it against the aforementioned three statements and then began crafting a page of new first lines.

For inspiration, I went through the books on my shelf and read what published authors came up with – man those folks can write!

How do you come up with a great first line? Share your comments below.

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