Monday, July 30, 2007

The Novelization of My Life

Writing is HARD!

Yes, I am whining. I am allowing myself just that one moment before I shut the hell up. This marks the moment when I start my novel...finally. I can delay it no longer. I have formed a writing group (I think we're sticking with the name The Midnight Pages) and we are meeting to exchange our work tomorrow. Right now I have a tentative title (something along the lines of "TS Untitled Book One") and a header with pagination. The first line is killing me. I need to get past that hurdle and then it's smooth sailing.

I need to write Chapter One tonight. 10-12 pages minimum and we'll see how it goes from there. But right now, my biggest obstacle is that first line. A good opening line is crucial and while I could write a mediocre line and come back later to edit it into something fantastic, I find that my opening line is just as important to me, the writer, as it will be to the readers. It sets the tone, it gives you a first impression of the narration (and in this case, the main character). And as we all know, first impressions count. So I want to start off right. I'm certainly not doing so by blogging about it, but I thought maybe I'd get the writing juices flowing. Maybe it would inspire me. I have the whole scene in my head -- now to put it onto paper.

God, you authors out there! How do you do it?


ktbuffy said...

I hate to say it, but I think the first lines seem to come to me when the concept for the story. Some of mine include:

"Thunder cracked overhead like a leather whip, and the pounding waves on the shore below echoed the sky's tumult." (I was young, it was my first book, forgive me!)

"He touched me, and it was that corny electric shock thingie that you read about in trashy romance novels… ok, in women’s erotica, if I’m being honest"

And my current WiP (all rights reserved!) -- "You know how in all those books and tv shows and movies, that special girl who can do all sorts of weird and unusual things has NO idea what she can do until she’s put in a situation where she has to? And then, suddenly, wham! Pow! Kaplooie! “I’m like, some kind of superhero!”
Yeah, that is SO not my story."

Barbara O'Connor said...

Boy, can I relate! One of my favorite quotes is from a writer named Tom Stoppard, who said: The hardest part is getting to the top of page one.

Good luck.


Emily Jiang said...

You might not want to hear this, but often the best first line is written last, after you've written the entire book. For your current first line for your submission, I'd suggest forget about a perfect first line. Write your 10-12 pages first, take a brief break, and then go back and revise your beginning. Make sure it's full of tension and give it a big hook.

Good luck on your novel!

T.S. said...

Thanks everyone! I ended up having a great opener! One that I was really proud of, that people commented on when they started reading, and that inspired me to keep going. All the advice and good words were much appreciated!

Zoraida Says said...

hazzaa! i have a blogger, too!