I have been tagged by fellow writer and blogger Emma Lindhagen to do a Work in Progress Blog Challenge. The challenge is simple: post the first line from the first three chapters in your current work in progress and then tag four people to do the same.
I don’t normally participate in such challenges, but I think this is a great way for fellow bloggers and writers to get to know each other and share their work. However, I’m going to cheat a little here and give you the first paragraph instead of the first sentence. I’m doing this because the challenge is supposed to get us acquainted with each other’s writing and style, and one sentence doesn’t truly convey that. Also, it reminds us how crucial the first few lines of our book (and early chapters) are in hooking your audience and making them want to finish your story. The reader may not necessarily stop reading your book after the first sentence, but the first paragraph certainly leaves an impression.
So here are my lines from the first book (as yet unnamed) of the Skig Island Trilogy. (Please keep in mind, they’re early draft and therefore very rough and subject to change):
Chapter One: The valley ran for miles, disappearing into the sharp edge of the mountain range. The fields were brown, dead, their colors muted by the grey sky. The wind whistled as it made waves of bent grass that reached Agi’s feet. She shivered in her thin nightgown. There was a figure in the distance. A shadow. Agi couldn’t see who or what it was, but it grew with each heartbeat. There was a faint melodic humming on the wind. She couldn’t make it out, but something about it tickled at the back of her mind. Like a memory. The sound grew louder, aggressive, until it filled Agi up and she felt it was all that encompassed the world.
Chapter Two: Farukel’s steps were quick, urgent. They made fast progress. It wasn’t until they were on the ship halfway home that Agi realized her father had left his wheelbarrow. She wondered if he even had time to sell all his fish. Her chest tightened. Something is very wrong.
Chapter Three: Agi slowly opened her eyes. Her head felt heavy, like it was filled with cotton. She gingerly sat up, cradling the back of her head. She pulled her hand away to check if there was blood, but it was clean. She was still in the boat tied to the dock. How long had she been out? She looked around for her family but the dock was empty. My family! Agi lunged forward and cried out in pain. She put pressure on the back of her head to stifle the pain and got to her feet, gritting her teeth.
After doing this, I’ve realized how dissatisfied I am with my first lines :/ I am an Over Writer and tend to over describe things which can lead to melodrama. Also, I know, I know, it’s super cliché to start a book with a dream, and it’s often deemed a big no-no. I am working on it. :P It’s too important to cut though, which makes it difficult. I have a lot of revising to do! Writing and rewriting, as always.
In any case, I hope this has sparked an interest in my story. Please, I’d love to hear any and all feedback you may have and want to give me!
I would like to tag the following people. You may be better than me at following rules and choose to do the one sentence. Or, feel free to share your first paragraphs:
1. Hannah Heath
4. You! :) If you’d like to join the fun, go right ahead!