Wednesday, April 9, 2014

First Line Grabber #25

TITLE: The Thing About Sam
GENRE: NA Contemporary

We met like any other couple—at a narcotics anonymous meeting in downtown Chicago.

45 comments:

  1. Yes. Ironic and catchy opening. Good voice already.

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  2. Yes. I love the contrast between the two parts of the sentence.

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  3. Yes. Draws me in and makes me wonder what's going on. How do they make things work? I want to read on to find out what the story is about.

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  4. No, but this is entirely subjective. The writing is engaging, but I'm just not interested in the character.

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  5. No. I don't know this character well enough to get her joke, so it comes off not as humorous, but as someone who doesn't know most couples don't meet at NA meetings. Also, I'm a little afraid I'm about to have to sludge through a bit of backstory before getting to the real story.

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  6. No. This is telling back story. It is akin to saying, okay reader, now I'm going to tell you a story. I'd rather know what is happening right now, at the moment the story opens. Once I know something about the characters, you can tell me how they met.

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  7. Yes. You've captured me with the bit of irony.

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  8. Yes. Great voice. I really want to learn more about the characters.

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  9. No. This seems too self-consciously clever for me.

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  10. No.

    The humor doesn't quite work for me. I get the joke but it leaves me raising my eyebrow and saying "really?" as opposed to laughing.

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  11. No, but close. I'm interested in the fact that they met at an NA meeting, but the "like any other couple" joke fell a bit flat on me.

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  12. Yes. I'm interested in where this going.

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  13. yes. makes me chuckle guiltily. you're not ever supposed to find NA funny, so I love the unexpected laugh.

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  14. Yes - I like the premise of a couple meeting at an NA meeting, though, I don't care for the "We met like any other couple" since that's not a typical scenario and it implies that it is.

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  15. Yes. Love that there is already a witty sense of humor.. Definitely interested. in reading more

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  16. Yes. Witty and ironic openings always draw me in. And I can't help but wonder if the POV character is serious (if so, wow! that says a lot about their character) or being sarcastic. Either way I want to find out.

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  17. No. Start with showing us the meeting, their eyes meeting across the room etc. If this is a flashback, I'd rethink it because most agents feel the same way about flashbacks as they do about prologues. Cut them.

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  18. Yes, you made me laugh with your opening sentence. This is extremely rare. You have my attention.

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  19. Yes, I like a little humor to open a book. And it's short and easy to read which is also a big plus for me.

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  20. Yes.
    I laughed. I don't know how long I'll keep reading, but I'll give this character a chance to show me how in the world they're an average couple.

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  21. No. but mostly just because this line just doesn't feel like my preferred genre, and I've got nothing in-scene to help me change my mind or draw me in in spite of that.

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  22. Yes
    -but just barely. I get the humor, but if the next line is the start of a huge chunk of info-dump then I'm out.

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  23. Yes, I laughed so thats a yes.

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  25. Sarah Maury SwanApril 9, 2014 at 4:12 PM

    Yes, Though this is back story, I like the humorous irony. I do agree that we'd best get into the present in the next sentence or two.

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  26. Yes.
    I love irony of the opening sentence and we get a sense of place and the characters in just a few words.

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  27. Yes- there's lots to go wrong or right.

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  28. No. The humour didn't engage me.

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  30. Yes - Humor in a serious situation gets my attention. The voice makes me want to know more about this MC.

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  31. No. Although it was witty, I don't believe anyone thinks that all couples meet at a narcotics anon meeting -- not even an addict.

    Maybe insert an adjective to describe the type of couple.

    I think with a little tweaking, you can get the response you're looking for.

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  32. Yes. That's a good set-up for a story. Especially an NA one.

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  33. Yes. I thought no yesterday, but an NA character that thinks all people meet at such a meeting is interesting to me.

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  34. No. It's a quirky opening, but it's not my style. I feel like I already know where the story is going. Instead of being intrigued, I can see it all playing out in my head already. Sorry. (and I disagree with the person above, I read the line as sarcasm)

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  35. Yes. I think the wry humor is effective and the tone is appropriate for the genre, even though it's probably not something I would read myself.

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  36. Yes. Twist to the "meet cute." Also, it's NA set in NA. Awesome.

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  37. Yes. This gave me a good chuckle. So causal, so honest!

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  38. Yes.
    Humour always hooks me. Plus the whole Narcotics Anon thing promises lots of drama in a relationship.

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  39. No. But this is subjective since I know a few people who have gone to addiction counselling, and it's hammered in that starting a relationship between fellow addicts is a very bad idea, so I don't really like how it's made light of. Normally I like dark-humour stuff like this... but this one hits a little too close to home where I just cringe rather than laugh.

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  40. No

    This isn't the start of a story. This is a sentence that prepares us for the start of the story. A 'real' first line (in my mind) would have had the MC at the meeting. We'd be there, seeing the story happen.

    It's done well and offers a lot. You've given us characters, setting, situation, and even voice in one sentence, but, to me, it's a line that belongs on the back of the book.

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  41. No - I like the voice, but the irony misses the mark.

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  42. no, not every one in Chicago is a druggie.

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