Flash Fiction Challenge: The Return Of The Opening Line Contest

Last week’s challenge: Life Is Hell.

I love this challenge because it always generates some interesting results.

It’s easy in concept, difficult in execution:

Come up with a great opening line.

That’s it.

Take that line, and drop it into the comments below.

BUT WAIT.

As they say, THERE’S MORE.

This opening line must be one sentence long — no more than that. Anything longer and I will publicly laugh at your inability to stick to the barest-of-bones submission guidelines.

I’d suggest avoiding some very cliched openings — previous challenges have yielded three overwrought motifs in this particular challenge, those three being:

Blood.

A gun.

Someone about to die / someone already dead (future corpse / current corpse).

So, maybe avoid those things unless you really think you can nail it.

The trick to writing a great opening line is keeping it brief, and yet at the same time suggesting a great deal of potential — an opening line is equal parts promise and fish-hook stuck in the reader’s brain-meats. It should make us want to read the rest of the story. Or, even better, make us as writers want to write the rest of that story (and par usual, that will be the nature of next Friday’s challenge). Nailing the opening line is a Samurai move — it’s delivering a single sword blow to end the match.

There will be a prize.

I’ll pick three that I love. And those three will get the first as-yet-unreleased e-book copies of my newest writing book, 500 Ways To Write Harder. You’ll get the book in PDF, ePub, and Kindle formats, all DRM-free because, really, fuck DRM right in its digital sphincter.

You have one week to get your lines in the door. Due firmly by noon EST on April 18th. I will then pick winners over the next week thereafter. You are allowed one entry, no more. Additional entries disqualify you.

So.

One opening line.

Make it sharp.

Win a book.

Drop it in the comments.

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