Hooked? – 2

Here are three more books and their opening lines.

Assuming the book is in a genre that might interest you, do you want to continue reading after the first lines? The authors hope so. What do you think? Are you interested enough to turn the page?

1. Grumpy Old Menopause by Carol E. Wyer

Have you started to write post-it notes with your kids’ names on them? Do you need to change your underwear after every time you sneeze? Guess it’s time to read this book then.

….  It’ll help you get through “that” time of your life with a spring in your step and a smile on your face. (Yeah right!)

GOM High Resolution Cover

 

http://www.safkhetpublishing.com/books/select/Grumpy_Old_Menopause.html

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2. Made in Nashville by Mandy Baggot

The lights were so bright, brighter than the strongest spotlight Honor had ever stood under. They were coming from all directions. Right. Left. Overhead. The crowd was roaring, clapping, stamping their feet, dancing. They moved like a sea, swaying, bobbing, rising up and falling back in time to the music. This was what she’d dreamed of since she was a little girl.

Made in Nashville

 http://smarturl.it/buymadeinnashville

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3. Kurinji Flowers by Clare Flynn

The beginning of July, and the sky was the colour of a dirty pigeon. 1936 had been a terrible year; dull, grey days, abnormally cool and unremittingly miserable. At least, that’s how I remember it.   

Kurinji Flowers LARGE EBOOK

 

amazon.com

 

Hooked? – 1

Here are three books and their opening lines.

Do you want to read more after you read the first lines? The authors hope so. What do you think? Are you interested enough to turn the page?

1. Dead Wood by Chris Longmuir

Last night, when the dark was at its blackest, something had nipped at her fingers. She’d wriggled them and it had moved away, slithering into the unknown, no doubt waiting for another opportunity.  (Dead Wood – Chris Longmuir)

DeadWood-AMAZON

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

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 2. Wall Walker by Janice E. Eberhardt

Viola Rasmussen gazed transfixed into her electron microscope, counting softly to herself, “…fifty-six, fifty-seven, fifty-eight. Hmm.”

She looked over at the geneticist working nearby. “Hey Jackson, how old was this person before he died?”

Jackson checked the background screen on his computer, “Um, looks like he was fifty-eight. Are you onto anything with that?”

Viola looked back into her microscope to verify the sample gene bearing fifty-eight concentric circles. “Holy moly!” she whispered to herself. “Not particularly,” she lied. “It’s just nice to know a little bit more about the body one’s slicing and dicing in the name of science, you know?” she continued in a slightly distracted but conversational tone as she rapidly copied the research data onto her com device.

WallWalker3D

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/473063

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3. Coffee, Tea, the Gypsy and Me by Caroline James

Jo’s romance with the gypsy began with his first kiss. She never forgot it...

CTTGM_CarolineJames_cover JPEG

 

UK – Coffee, Tea, The Gypsy & Me… eBook: Caroline James: Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store

USA – Coffee, Tea, The Gypsy & Me… – Kindle edition by Caroline James. Literature & Fiction Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

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First Lines – First Impressions

Have you heard the expression, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”? Well, so it is with books.

Writing a book is a challenge, but getting people to read it can be even more difficult. It is the author’s job to turn that novel into a page turner. First, though, he has to get someone to start reading. The first page of a book can snag a reader’s interest or have him slap it shut and toss it away, never to be opened again.

A good book will hook the reader on the first page. An excellent book will hook the reader in the first paragraph, or even the first sentence. Authors must not underestimate the importance of that opening line. It is worth spending a lot of time on, if it means getting it right.

What should a first line, or at least a first paragraph, do?

Make the reader:

  • wonder what’s going on
  • wonder what happened and why
  • want to know what will happen next
  • want to know how the situation will be resolved
  • want to turn the page and read more.

The writer has only a few words to convince the reader that his book is worth reading. Please have a look at these opening lines and decide whether you would want to continue reading the book.

1. I knew I must have the wrong address. He was absolutely stunning. My heart fluttered and thudded frantically. Heat rose to my face. I ducked my head in embarrassment, but couldn’t keep my eyes off him. (The Wind Weeps – Anneli Purchase)

2 .I was born twice: first as a girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974. (Middlesex – Jeffrey Eugenides)

3. Call me Ishmael. Some years ago – never mind how long precisely – having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. (Moby Dick – Herman Melville)

4. On an exceptionally hot evening early in July a young man came out of the garret in which he lodged in S. Place and walked slowly, as though in hesitation, towards K. Bridge. He had successfully avoided meeting his landlady on the staircase. (Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky)

5. They say ignorance is bliss. I can vouch for that. My life was humming along just fine until I received that letter. Afterwards, nothing was the same. (Orion’s Gift – Anneli Purchase)

6. Men’s voices, harsh and abrupt, sent a stab of fear through her. She peered cautiously up an alleyway towards the town square. (Julia’s Violinist – Anneli Purchase)

So, for the authors out there, you see that we have our work cut out for us. Let’s shine up our opening pages. Isn’t it worth doing after spending so much time writing a whole book?

 

Absent Fathers

My guest today is Carol Balawyder of Montreal. I’ve invited her to tell us about one of her new novels, “Getting to Mr. Right.”

carol balawyder

One of the underlying themes of Getting to Mr. Right is the absent father. The main protagonist, Campbell Jones, has done much research on the topic and is convinced that her father’s abandonment is to blame for her being “unlucky in love.” In this scene she meets her father at the Museum of Contemporary Art which is hosting a photo exhibit by the Brazilian artist, Vik Muniz.

Excerpt:
Sitting there, she became a girl of nine or ten again, feeling the weight of rejection. “Why didn’t you come all those times you said you would?” she blurted out before she lost her courage. When her father gave her a puzzled look, she continued, “When I was younger, you promised to take me out and never showed up. So many times.”
Her father sat next to her and patted her knee. “I don’t know why, Cambie. I guess I was too busy.”
“You really hurt me,” she said.
“I’m sorry,” he said. “But let’s put this behind us. It was such a long time ago.” He patted her knee once more, as if that could pacify her.
She held back from saying, “You ruined my life,” unwilling to give him the satisfaction of knowing that he’d had that kind of power over her.
“Isn’t that painting of Marilyn Monroe divine?” he said.

Marilyn Monroe

All her life she’d struggled to show her father that she was worthy of his love. What about him? Was he worthy of hers? Had he ever given her the protection and support a daughter needed from her father? Had he ever been there for her in times of need?
It suddenly became clear to her. Maybe she had subconsciously wanted to validate the conclusions of her research. Girls abandoned by their fathers have difficulty developing meaningful relationships as adults. But she hadn’t been wrong about her father. She had not imagined his disregard and lack of concern for her.
Maybe the research was right – that such a background kept women from fulfilling relationships. But did that doom them to a dismal future? There was a missing link. That was, what do you do once you realize you lack your father’s love and support?

Getting to mr right

Getting To Mr. Right is available on Amazon both as an e-book and paperback. Just click on the link:

amazon.com