Tuesday, December 19, 2006
It was a dark and stormy night....
In this article, aptly titled, "It was a dark and stormy night," the author talks about writing great opening sentences that "hook" your reader. The infamous one referenced by the title of the article is often the subject of great ridicule in writing classes.
I agree with the author of the article that one of the best examples of a great opening line comes from none other than Papa Hemingway himself in "The Old Man and the Sea.":
"He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf Stream and he had gone eighty-four days now without taking a fish. "
In addition to the Hemingway citation the author also manages to treat us to some fly fishing by including this analogy:
Opening sentences are crucial for any writer. They’re like casting a dry fly into a school of largemouth bass. If the fly — or the sentence — is attractive enough, you’ll get a bite.
Ah the joys of casting a size 20 blue winged olive dry fly to a big largemouth bass!