I don’t find the old line about first impressions to be true.
Probably because I happen to put my foot in my mouth more often than I’d like to admit (just ask P about the first time we met…oops), but also because I believe in depth, not brevity.
As an aspiring writer/thinker/philosopher, I love to probe through the intricacies of a problem, explore the contours, and truly appreciate the whole of a problem/entity/issue.
But when I read about this “first lines” article it made me want to do the same.
There is inherent power in the opening of a new book. It is the hook for the whole story and its power can motivate a reader through hundreds of pages.
I would love to write a book someday, although who knows how that will turn out. Nevertheless, I will need an awesome first line.
“I’m seated in an office, surrounded by heads and bodies.”
~ Infinite Jest, DFW
“Nothing to be done.”
~ Waiting for Godot, Samuel Beckett
“I live on The Island, where much has the appearance of Life Goes On.”
~ 1 Dead in Attic, Chris Rose
“We have all the answers,” Dostoevsky said: “It is the questions we do not know.”
~ Testimony: Crises of Witnessing in Literature, Psychoanalysis, and History, Laub & Felman
“If this typewriter can’t do it, then fuck it, it can’t be done.”
~ Still Life with Woodpecker, Tom Robbins
“One cannot work constructively in theology or philosophy without encountering at every step the concepts which constitue the subject of these lectures, love, power, and justice.”
~ Love, Power and Justice, Paul Tillich
What are your favorites?