Friday, July 30, 2010

First Line Challenge

Are you ready to get your creative juices flowing?

I'll give you the first sentence or passage of a famous novel, and your job is to turn it into a paragraph that is totally unique, and totally you!

Authors and characters are all welcome to attempt this little exercise. Let's see how many different perspectives we can create. As a bonus, try to guess the book that's being quoted.

(Incidentally, the last opener was from The Color Purple by Alice Walker.)

Okay, are you ready? Here we go!

”Where's Papa going with that ax?” said Fern to her mother as they were setting the table for breakfast...


Jesse Littleton said...

"Where's Papa going with that ax?" said Fern to her mother as they were setting the table for breakfast...

"Don't ask such silly questions," Fern's big brother, Freddy, said as he swiped a muffin from the basket. "You know exactly where he's going. How else would we get chicken legs for dinner?"

A look of horror passed across Fern's face. It had honestly never occurred to her before where their meat came from. Her job had always been to milk the cows, collect the eggs, and tend to the vegetables. But, now that she knew, she was sure that she was destined to be a vegetarian - hardly an acceptable thing for a farmer's daughter to be.

More importantly, she had to hurry if she wanted to spare her favorite hen from an inevitable fate.

David Jace said...

”Where's Papa going with that ax?” said Fern to her mother as they were setting the table for breakfast...

"He's going to get meat for us to eat. Go wash your hands and then peel some potatoes."

Papa pulled the hood closer to his face, against the freezing wind. He barely remembered a time when the world wasn't a chunk of ice. He vaguely recalled stories his parents had told of times when there was a thing called government and peace. He still had, pressed between the pages of a book, locked away in a chest, buried under the house in the sub-basement, a crushed thing that used to have remarkable color to it. It was the last flower he remembered seeing.

He came to the town, where many survivors huddled together for protection from the vengeful elements, and the dangerous, outlying predatory survivors. The ones who knew there was only one way to survive: alone.

Papa peeked into the first window and saw a mother and three children pulled together by the meager fire. They looked as though they'd hardly eaten in their lives. They probably hadn't. He moved on. These needed to grow up more; he had a family to feed. Snacks wouldn't do it.

[My friend says it's from Charlotte's Web. Sounds right to me.]

Laura Martone said...

Ooh, sick, David. ;-)

And, yes, your friend is correct. This is the start of CHARLOTTE'S WEB. Yahoo for your smart pal!

Candy said...

But Fern didn't really need to ask, she knew.
It was she who had found her brother Toby hanging dead at the end of that long rope strung over the limb of the big oak. Even now it sent shivers through her and made her want to crawl into a hole and never come out. She saw Toby's distorted face whenever she shut her eyes so she could never sleep again.
Whack. Whack.
She heard her father's strength attacking the tree.
The hatchet by the fireplace spoke to her and Fern snatched it up . Running full pelt, ignoring her mother's shouts, she flew outside, sobbing with fury, and fell to helping her father destroy her brother's murderer..

David Jace said...

Very nice, Candy! I like it!

Candy said...

Thanks, David! I like yours too. Intriguing, and I daren't think what papa looks like.