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First Lines

by on July 17, 2012

So, I was thinking that perhaps I ought to do a blog post once in a while that isn’t a short story, or a Catrina episode. Not that there’s anything wrong with short stories or Catrina episodes; I’m actually quite fond of them. But I have been thinking I should be posting in a more routine-like fashion. Maybe discuss what I’m reading at present, or commenting on movies I’ve seen recently, and so forth. Speaking of, I am terribly excited about The Dark Knight Rises; I have already bought my Batman-classic-logo t-shirt in preparation,ย  I have my ticket, and I am studiously avoiding any Internet news articles that even come close to vaguely referencing it. (Incidentally, David Letterman? Fie on you, sir. Fie.)

Right, then, moving on…this morning I read an interesting post by Trisha, who is participating in an event called the Hookers and Hangers blogfest. No, it’s not what it sounds like. Shame on you. ๐Ÿ™‚ย  What it is, is that on one day you post the first lines from the chapters of your book, and on the next day you post the last lines. Brilliant, no? Well, without further adieu, here are the first lines from all eleven chapters, plus the prologue, of Catrina in Space.ย  I will of course issue an obligatory spoiler alert, although I’m not sure yet what spoilers there might be. Let’s see what we have here….

1. There are a lot of fun vacation spots in the universe; the bug-pits of Aylorta Five are not one of them.

2. It was a bleary, cold day in Shmirmingard Castle.

3. It was five miles from the village where Susanโ€™s shuttle had crashed down to Shmirmingard Castle, where Catrina still slumbered peacefully over her kitten-law casebook.

4. Catrina had gotten bored again.

5. A few miles away from where Catrina was about to die in a spectacular shuttle explosion,ย  Perry had settled in for the night at the same small country inn where he had spent the last night.

6. Murphy the Terrible was alone in his room, in a dingy inn along one of the worse streets of the city.

7. Catrina was having a lovely dream.

8. โ€œAllllll right, you incompetent bunch of sniveling weasels!”

9. At about the same time that Carlos was getting horribly splatted before the walls of Shmirmingard, Princess Catrina and her newfound space hamster friends were just stepping through the walkway into the bustling whirl of the Citrisica Space Station.

10. Catrina, Ferdinand, and Becky-Jane materialized in streaks of violet light, landing on a wide white marble platform edged with gold.

11. At first she wasnโ€™t aware of anything except grey.

12. Black clouds blanketed the sky, lit only by the dull flashes of sheet lightning, and the sullen rumbling of thunder in the distance.

Well, there you have it. I think my favorites are how 4 and 5 seem to flow together. Good things never do happen when Catrina gets bored.


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  1. Great openings, but I do know from experience that the openings to your chapters/stories are just the beginning of much greatness! hehe. Did you add your link to the blogfest list? You may get more visitors that way ๐Ÿ™‚ You can add it on here :

    • Done, and thanks for pointing that out. : Now I just have to make a post with the hangers. ๐Ÿ˜›

  2. Great job. #8 made me laugh.

    • Number 8 was being delivered by a drill sergeant to an army of minions. Drill sergeants are fun to write, let me tell you.

  3. I really like the last two! Well done!

  4. Wow, you are excellent with creating images in just a few short sentences. The last ones were awesome! And I loved the dialog lines. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Glad you liked the last ones; I’ve always worried a bit over my descriptions, and it’s good to know they worked. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Okay, #9 reminds me of Stephen Walker’s book, ‘Danny Yates Must Die’ (same kind of humour).

    …though I must tell you, your castle name made my eyes cross…

    • There’s a long and complicated story behind the castle name; basically the guy who named it was a Prince Charming wannabe who was supposed to be the True Love’s Kisser for an enchanted princess named Ermingard, but he fell in love with another girl named Veronica whom he met in the woods. Roderick was thinking aloud about his decision to ignore Ermingard for Veronica, and said “Ermingard shmirmingard!” Veronica wanted to know what he meant (she didn’t know about poor Ermie) and so Roderick covered by suggesting they run off together, build a castle, and name it Shmirmingard. Thus the name. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Sounds like there is a lot of humour in your book. #1 is an awesome opening line! I like all of them, though.

    • There is a lot of humour, yes. It was a fun book to write. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for commenting!

  7. Number 8 is really funny!

  8. First lines are a fun art that I should probably spend more time on. Yours are pretty funny all put together!

    • Yeah, I hadn’t thought too much about first lines before this, but now…I may think about them more. ๐Ÿ™‚

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