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Yes. This sounds beautiful and I want to know more
No - I hate openings with setting, and it's not an interesting enough setting to warrant it being the opening sentence, for me.
No. I agree with Lindsay, I don't like opening with setting unless there's something really weird about it.
No. While this is beautifully written, is hasn't told me anything about what the story will be about.
No, the sentence is convoluted rather than beautiful. I actually used to live in a place that could easily be described that way and I got no visual from this.
Yes. Beautiful imagery. As the novel is literary rather than commercial, setting the scene before rushing to the story is perfectly acceptable.
No.I know it's literary, and so starting with the setting isn't a problem for me here, but i'm not wowed by the sentence. It doesn't really tell me much and i there's nothing in the sentence that makes me sit up and think "now THAT'S a description!"
No. To be fair, this isn't a genre I like, so part of this is subjective. However, this felt really generic to me.
No. Opening with setting details doesn't capture my attention.
No-It just wasn't very interesting.
No. Because it's just description, and beyond that, there is nothing unique or interesting about it.
No. I think there's a contradiction between the harsh sunlight and the trail snaking through the pines.
No - I don't like the sentence construction and there is no conflict introduced. Started with description usually doesn't hook me.
No- the combination of description doesn't match in my mind
Yes. I like the strong visual and the feeling that I'm being dropped into a place and scene.
No. I'm getting conflicting images in my head--harsh sunlight just doesn't connect with a trail snaking through trees. (though admittedly, I'm an east coast boy and not familiar with ponderosa pine country).
No. If the trail is snaking through pines, I don't believe it is also beneath harsh sun. Sunlight doesn't penetrate a pine forest to the point that it would be such a dominant feature. I also don't understand the hissing river. It's an unusual descriptor and makes me think this story is trying too hard.
No.Beautiful writing, but I think this might be better served later on in paragraph one. Why is your MC on the trial? What is he or she after?
No. I would like to know what is important about the trail. Opening with description doesn't grab me unless it's really unusual. A trail leading to a river isn't unusual.
No - Makes me feel like the trail is the MC. Very passive.
Yes. It nicely sets the scene and by using words like harsh, snaked, hissing, gives us an idea of the narrator's thoughts about his/her surroundings. But if you tell me in the next sentence that the narrator loves the place, I'm going to call foul.
No. While I like the idea, there's too much description going on here.
No.I don't have a problem starting with description, but I equate harsh sunlight with more of a desert area, and a trail through the pines would be shaded or dappled, and I can't imagine a hissing river. The sentence isn't doing it's job.
Yes. This creates a strong image of the setting. I'm partial to the locale as well, since (unlike JeffO!) I'm a native of ponderosa pine country. :) (And unless you're standing in the shade directly under a large tree, there's plenty of harsh sunlight, so that's a very accurate description!)However, I do feel this sentence could be reworked to make it more elegant -- it almost sounds as if you're trying a bit too hard -- and although the connection between 'snaked' and 'hissing' is clever, I'm sure I've never heard a river 'hiss'.
No. I love literary fiction, but this line doesn't tell me anything. I don't have a character or time period or anything to hang onto yet.
No. This reads a bit like a first draft without the benefit of voice and detail to set it apart. To start with setting, I need to feel a tone or a vibe.
No. Because harsh sunlight under Ponderosa pines messed with my senses. I think shade and reprieve from the sun when I think pines. So, I think it needs more detail.
No. While a nice image, gives me nothing about story or character. Also, if trail is snaking through pines, how can the sunlight be harsh? It would be diffused by the foliage.
No. The image is confusing - harsh sunlight on a trail that's winding it way through tall ponderosa pines? I want to smell and taste this place - not be told aboout. And a "hissing" river? How does a river "hiss?" It would be a great line in a SF/F novel because it raises questions about what kind of water is flowing - but it's a strange choice for literary fiction.