It was a dark and Stormy night…


All the many times that you have started a story with the words above, would have made you a perfect candidate to win the Bulwer-lytton prize.

Edward George Bulwer-Lytton was an English novelist, who apart from coining phrases like “the pen is mightier than the sword“, also wrote the famous opening line “It was a dark and stormy night“. And in his honour, the English department at San Jose State University set up the Bulwer-Lytton prize which awards a person for composing “the worst opening line for a novel”.

 

Well, my literature was always suitable for a Bulwer Lytton, as I tend to start writing in the corniest of lines. So, this competition is right up my alley. I quickly got down to writing the worst possible opening lines ever (piece of cake for my genre! I wrote all of them in 3 minutes flat). And if I were to ever submit my entries for the Bulwer-Lytton contest, I would be confused among these 3 gems.
 
1. Even as the wind blew into her ears, and the taxi horns seemed to be pumped on Viagra, and the screeching tyres of the new red Alto wouldn’t relent, and the fruit seller on the road wouldn’t give up his position towards the competition even in the face of impending recession, she could clearly hear every word of what he just said, and each of them succeeded in getting her more and more perplexed.
 
2. She was nervous, not to the point of looking down at the neat bow on her new shiny, red shoes, but more to the point of taking the Reynolds pen in her pocket and using two trembling fingers to remove the cap off the pen, and then trembling to attach it back again, all the while trying to nervously figure out which end of the pen fits into the blue cap that she held in her fingers.
 
3. He reached for his toes, not the hallux, index, middle or the fourth, but for the little, oblivious one, and he knew from the way that he squirmed in his own tracksuits while he rested on the last of the 23 steps, that his obesity was now out of his control and was rather moving into a zone he had never heard of before, leave alone visiting.
 
 
Since you are your best critic, what do you think is the worst opening line that you have ever written?
 

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About Abhi Surendran

Abhi quit his corporate job, and decided to immerse himself in travels, photography, occasional periods of bankruptcy, and copious amounts of insanity. He is currently working on a book of his experiences, and a dream road trip through South Asia. Both in a haphazard fashion. He blogs at Iamnothome and you can also catch him at times on Facebook and twitter.

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