We’ve all heard it. The first sentence, first page, the middle of the book, and the last chapter are the most important parts of the entire book. But, what do we need to do to make certain that our first sentence is more than good. No, GREAT!
Our first sentence is completing with thousands of other first sentences. I don’t know about you, but after I go through a stack of books based on their covers, I open them at the beginning. The first sentence HAS to hook me. After I read the first sentence then I read the entire first paragraph, then the entire page, just to give the author a chance. If I’m not hooked by the end of the page I shelf the book and move on to the next one in my stack.
Below are six things we should always include in our first page:
1. AN OPENING HOOK! is a must! A sentence or two that will catch our readers’ interest attention. Next week we’ll talk more about “Hook”.
2. Our main character’s name (the protagonist’s name must be on the first page, preferably in the first paragraph)
3. Introduce our main character: sex, age, human or not, personality
5. Something that concerns the antagonist – fears: future, past, someone, something, of being inadequate, etc; how she feels different; he lives in an unusual place from the rest of his peers; she does or is something different or unfamiliar; the antagonist’s weakness.
6. The protagonist’s life goal, someone, something extremely important to him
7. A hint to the time of year; setting: on Earth; in the past; future, alternate universe
Now, it’s your turn. What else do you put in your first page that will help us “hook” our potential readers?
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