This morning, I started reading Paper Towns, by John Green. The opening sentence is “The way I figure it, everyone gets a miracle.” It occurred to me that it might be fun to make up poetry from the first sentences of novels, so I copied a few out. My choices were limited, since I pass on most novels after I’ve read them, but I have a few kicking around which belonged to someone who died. As I was arranging my opening lines, it struck me that they could be further used to make up a new plot for a novel, should I be so inclined… which I’m not. After completing my “poem” it didn’t seem very poetic, so I’m posting it as flash fiction.
June the first, a bright summer evening, a Monday. I am in a car park in Leeds when I finally tell my husband I don’t want to be married to him any more. The first time Richard hit me, I could see stars in front of my eyes like they do in cartoons.
I woke up in a dinghy claw-foot tub in an unfamiliar bathroom. The door was the first thing. The door was open.
“Hide!” He was shrieking, frantic, his face drained of all colour.
You could very easily meet William. The way I figure it, everyone gets a miracle.
Do you fancy having a go at First Line Flash? It’s a fun way to write when you’re all out of inspiration.
Miriam Keyes – The Brightest Star in the Sky
Nick Hornby – How to be Good
Elizabeth Flock – Me and Emma
Sara Shepard – The Lying Game
Nicki French – The Safe House
Ian Rankin – Hide and Seek
Geoff Ryman – The King’s Last Song
John Green – Paper Towns.
Apologies to Ian Rankin for the misquote – I had to drop a word from his line.
©Jane Paterson Basil