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Work your incipit Editor's Notes #122
May 15, 2012
Hello,

You must not come lightly to the blank page.
--Stephen King


In this issue:

1. Work your incipit
2. Tickled my funnybone
3. Interesting Web site

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1. Work your incipit
In Latin, incipit means it begins. Long before books had titles, a book was known by its incipit, or first words. To this day, untitled poems are often identified by their first lines.

Openings offer the writer a range of options. A great opening could announce a theme, define a character, pose a dilemma or otherwise lure the reader into the text. Often the opening lingers in the mind of the reader for a lifetime.

Besides signalling what's important in the book, the opening, perhaps more than any other part of the book, lends itself to elegant writing. This is the place for literary devices like alliteration, parallelism, and metaphor. Choose the verbs with special care; they slither, smash, waltz, wend, plead, or punch their way into the reader's mind, setting a mood for what is to come.

On the picture-is-worth-a-thousand-words principle, I've given you 100 examples of excellent incipits in the Interesting Web site link below. Use these first lines as inspiration for your own memorable incipit.

If your own favourite opening is not on the list, add it to the Timeline on the WritersHelper Facebook page.
https://www.facebook.com/WritersHelperEditor

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2.Tickled my funnybone
From a church bulletin: Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands.

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3. Interesting Web site
Is your favourite opening line in this list of the best 100?

http://americanbookreview.org/100BestLines.asp

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