Hey guys. It’s been a while.

Over the past few weeks, my life has been… interesting. I’ve been stressed both by school and by things outside of school, but I also got to see my work published in print for the first time, which was amazing!

But naturally, with a busy schedule comes a lack of spare time. Or writing time.

So once again, I’ve found myself asking, “Mandy, how can you get yourself to write more often?”

And I think I might have come up with an answer:

First sentences

If there’s one thing that can grab a reader like no other, it’s the opening sentences of a book. And those words at the beginning of the book should draw readers in, if you want them to decide that they want to stay in your story’s world for a while.

So I’ve been writing first sentences a lot lately. Tiny scraps of ideas. 

For example:

She sat on the steps outside of a bar, smoking a cigar and doing her best to act like she’d been on Titan before.

Or this one:

It was ten years to the day after my first liftoff when I saw them again.

Or this:

Serina often wondered what she would look like if she stood in the sun.

 

What’s the story of the girl at the bar? Who are the “them” in the second prompt? Why doesn’t Serina go in the sun? I have ideas on how I would continue these stories, but your ideas may differ.

And that’s the beauty of the first sentence. It creates questions that you get to answer in your own way, and nobody else will do it the same way as you.

A lot of writing prompt accounts online have snippets of dialogue and lines meant to inspire a writing spree, but in my experience, a lot of them don’t work as first sentences. Maybe they work on the first page, but almost never as the first sentence. And writing your own prompts is just as effective. After all, your writing style could flow very differently than a prompt bank’s.

So I have a challenge for you guys: if you’re busy and you don’t think you have time to write, write the first sentence of a story. You don’t have to finish the story. Just write down the first sentence and see where it takes you.

 

What tactics do you guys use to get yourselves to write? Let me know in the comments!

Recommend0 recommendationsPublished in Journals, Writer's Block, Writing AdviceLog in or Register to save this content for later.

A. H Berry

Hi guys! I'm a 17-year-old nerd with a passion for written words. When I'm not on here, I'm probably sleeping, doing homework, binge-watching YouTube, or perhaps actually writing. To see more snippets of my life, follow me on Instagram (@ahberryhere)

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