Friday, January 1, 2010

NaBloPoMo--will I blog every day in January?

Just like National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo (that was in November, and no, I didn't do it. Why? Because I already wrote two novels. One of them--the second--has to sell this year or I might...I might...completely lose hope. Because it's good and it's important, and believe me, I'm not just saying that. I have incredibly high standards, even for--especially for--myself), there is also NaBloPoMo.

Yes, you guessed it: that stands for National Blog Posting Month.

The challenge is to post every day during a month. I believe NaBloPoMo starts now, in January.

Google it and find the website/blog about it. (I apologize for not being more specific. I am really tired from last night, and think I have a fever. NaBloPoMo is neither my brainchild nor project, although I am happy to participate.)

This means, of course, that all my posts in January will not be fabulous. They can't be. There isn't time. Quantity in this case is more important than quality. But because it's also just important to write daily, and to start conversations, I think NaBloPoMo will be useful and worthwhile. Good will come of it.

I will write, as usual, about what is on my mind. Today, it was the Mummers (how cool are the Mummers? Seriously. Google them, too, and check out their outfits, their choreography, their masks, and tell me what you think!). That Mummers Parade is one of the more interesting things about Philadelphia, and there's plenty of interesting around here.

I have also been thinking about the first line of my first novel. I still like it, though my task right now is to revise the first novel--in the hope that the second will sell and that whoever buys it will ask me if I have another...can you say "two book deal?"

I realize that two-book deals aren't always in the author's favor, but I really need to get my novels out. I always feel that life's a-wastin'.

Anyway, it's not like I know of any impending deal for the first (agent is probably reading it right now), so it's a moot point.

Now, the question is: "What's the first line of the first novel?"

I am sort of scared to type it here. It will read strangely out of context.

Instead, I will post the first lines. Remember, this is from my first novel, which I wrote four years ago. Maybe five.

I was thinking about the first line as I walked my dogs tonight and wondering if it was great or boring. First lines are so important. Then again, how many books have I read where I wasn't all that impressed with the first lines?

When does the novel really need to grab you? I realize that the answer is: "As soon as possible, or else I'll stop reading."

What do you think of this?

By Elizabeth Collins


They say that there are only two things you need to know about the universe. One, that it is infinite. Two, that it is always expanding.

I’m not going to lie and say I even understand what that means. Literally. But I guess this stuff about the universe represents some great big honking universal truth. Something we’ll all understand at some point, something like ‘change is constant.’

Yeah, change. That’s one thing you can count on.

My second novel's opening lines might be better. I'll leave that posting for tomorrow.

NaBloPoMo is in effect...keep writing those blog posts. Keep warm, keep busy.


  1. I like the opening! I would keep reading. :)

    I'm a pretty easy-going reader. I know agents pick the book from the opening line(s), but as a consumer/reader I pick the book by the back cover (or someone's recommendation). Even if the beginning isn't that riveting, I will keep reading because of the story promised to me in the back-cover blurb.

    (But I may not be the person to listen to on these matters... I hardly stop reading a book, even when it's atrocious. I either keep reading hoping it will get better, or I keep reading to see just how bad it's going to get. I'd make a terrible agent... :P)

  2. I think I am like you, Criss. I would keep reading, too. Is it fair to judge a novel or story on the basis of a few first lines? I think not. And yet--something has to grab the reader or intrigue her/him, convince the reader to actually read!

    I have a problem with deciding too quickly whether something is worth a read. But maybe that is because I love to read and read whatever I see.