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Opening Lines for Books I Won’t Ever Write June 30, 2008

Posted by gregquill in Uncategorized.


These are the 10 winners of this year’s Bulwer-Lytton contest, wherein one writes only the first line of a bad novel. Victorian author Edward George Bulwer-Lytton is famous–or is it infamous?–for writing the novel that began “It was a dark and stormy night.” (http:// www. tomcoyner .com/top_10_bulwer.htm)

10. As a scientist, Throckmorton knew that if he were ever to break wind in the sound chamber he would never hear the end of it.

9. Just beyond the Narrows the river widens.

8. With a curvaceous figure that Venus would have envied, a tanned, unblemished oval face framed with lustrous thick brown hair, deep azure-blue eyes fringed with long black lashes, perfect teeth that vied for competition, and a small straight nose, Marilee had a beauty that
defied description.

7. Andre, a simple peasant, had only one thing on his mind as he crept along the east wall: Andre creep… Andre creep… Andre creep.

6. Stanislaus Smedley, a man always on the cutting edge of narcissism, was about to give his body and soul to a back-alley sex-change surgeon to become the woman he loved.

5. Although Sarah had an abnormal fear of mice, it did not keep her from eking out a living at a local pet store.

4. Stanley looked quite bored and somewhat detached, but then penguins often do.

3. Like an overripe beefsteak tomato rimmed with cottage cheese, the corpulent remains of Santa Claus lay dead on the hotel floor.

2. Mike Hardware was the kind of private eye who didn’t know the meaning of the word fear, a man who could laugh in the face of danger and spit in the eye of death — in short, a moron with suicidal tendencies.


1. The sun oozed over the horizon, shoved aside darkness, crept along the greensward, and, with sickly fingers, pushed through the castle window, revealing the pillaged princess, hand at throat, crown asunder, gaping in frenzied horror at the sated, sodden amphibian lying beside her, disbelieving the magnitude of the frog’s deception, screaming madly, “You lied!”



1. Brenda Love - July 1, 2008

Number one sounds like a sentence I would compose.

2. gregquill - July 5, 2008

Brenda, I had you in mind!

Sandy, you are too generous! I was moved by your writing, that’s all. The fourth was great, and I hope yours was, too. And I will take your suggestion and post some of my more… uh… successful recipes.

3. Brenda Love - July 6, 2008

Ahem Greg, its a new month. We need UPDATE

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