How to use
Use these first paragraphs as a kickstart to your writing. Start writing where I finished; it doesn’t matter if you write a sentence, a paragraph, a page. Keep writing until you stop. Re-read your copy and consider where it is going. Do not edit it at this point. Could it be turned into a character exercise for your current work-in-progress? Is it a completely new idea for a novel? Perhaps it is the germ of a piece of short fiction or a concise flash fiction story. If it doesn’t feel right, change something: change the gender of the character, set it in the future or the past, change the time of day, the weather, the mood, the threat, the genre.
These 20 #FirstParas are a sample of what’s available in the Writers’ BLOCKbusters series of writing prompts.
Behind a Wall
He crouched behind a wall, listening for the sound of marching boots. His breath came so hard from running it sounded like a car engine. Was that them, fading away? A hand clutched his shoulder.
Julius Blackdown was not a rich man. But he was a farmer with a reputation for honesty and hard work.
“She didn’t stop to wonder how she got this low, she just grabbed the tomato cores and salad onion stalks and crammed them into her mouth.”
The light went on in the small window on the third floor, seven windows from the right, and he knew the Queen was awake. Same time as usual.
Felim Donald knew the horse was a sprinter and not made for jumps.
It felt like flying, it wasn’t quick at all, she expected to be over in the minutest part of a second, but she was still here, floating, like a bubble blown from a child’s soapy wand.
They were her mother’s favourite blooms…
In the fast-moving waters of Moose River, Ontario, a new predator threatened the status quo.
Dad sat here at 10am every morning, until yesterday.
Alison had no intention of drinking coffee and eating cake in the cafes of garden centres for the next twenty years.
It was an area of scrub that looked like nothing. Not visible from the road a mile away, not dissected by footpaths or trails. Even animals didn’t bother going there. Beside the wreck of a burnt out car in the hard dusty ground was the print of a boot.
The police bagged it as evidence.
The Circling Eagle
The screech of the circling eagle echoed off the bare rock. Forder Pagham wondered what the bird could possibly have seen alive in this godforsaken place. He had eaten nothing since a lizard three days ago, spitted over a fire and eaten in four mouthfuls.
The Koller Building
Outside the window on the fifty-fifth floor of the Koller Building and unseen by anyone inside, a metal chain was slowly lowered.
The rear left-hand corner of the garden at Bellview Cottage was a sorry sight, thin weeds, bare stony ground, yellowing leaves. A shady spot, it was an anti-oasis in an otherwise luscious garden. Every owner tried to bring it to life, each failed without understanding why. Because this corner had a secret to tell.
Made of Gold
She looked across the desert. Nothing moved, not the shimmer of heat rising, not the faintest stir of blowing sand. It was as if the world was made of gold.
The farm had been grazed by sheep since his father’s time so it was with a heavy heart that he loaded the last of his herd onto the truck to the knacker’s yard.
Albie Warbright knew he was in for a fight when he saw the vicar marching towards him. He turned off his lawnmower and waited.
It Was Blue
It wasn’t the car he wanted, but it would do the job. It wasn’t fast, but it was blue.
The Raventhorpe family were blessed with girls, seven of them. No sons, no matter how much they wished it.
What are ‘Writers’ BLOCKbusters’?
I want to help you put words on the page. Those words won’t necessarily be the first line of your novel, or indeed anything to do with your novel, but they will be words to fill that intimidating blank space. And it couldn’t be quicker. Writers’ BLOCKbusters is a collection of three ebooks of writing prompts. Why are they different? Precisely because they are short, easy to use, and flexible. Designed for writers of fiction, any genre, novels, short stories, flash fiction, they are suitable for all genre of fiction precisely because each exercise is based on a subject unrelated to whatever you are struggling with. I am not looking over your shoulder.
Ebooks coming in 2021 at Amazon…
Writers’ BLOCKbusters: #500 FirstParas
Writers’ BLOCKbusters: #500 FlashPics
Writers’ BLOCKbusters: #500 WordStorms