The Importance of First Lines

Does your first sentence capture your reader’s attention?

Whether you’re writing a novel, script, how-to book, poem, blog post or feature, your power as a writer begins at the beginning. Your opening line needs to hook and reel-in your readers.

Here are a few examples of the opening lines in some well-known novels:

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.
– Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.
– George Orwell, 1984

The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.
– William Gibson, Neuromancer

Mrs. Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself.
– Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway

It was the day my grandmother exploded. 
-Iain M. Banks, The Crow Road

Now, look at the first lines in your current writing project. Do your words tease and engage the reader? Does every word count? Is your opening line provocative and memorable?

If you wish to produce a page-turner, start as you mean to continue. Captivate with your first line.

Happy writing!