Alex Songe introduced me recently to the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, an award given to the worst opening lines in novels every year. I don’t know whether to thank him or curse him. I’m not sure I want to live in a world where people write lines like this:
As an ornithologist, George was fascinated by the fact that urine and feces mix in birds’ rectums to form a unified, homogeneous slurry that is expelled through defecation, although eying Greta’s face, and sensing the reaction of the congregation, he immediately realized he should have used a different analogy to describe their relationship in his wedding vows. — David Pepper, Hermosa Beach, CA
Or this, the 2006 winner for children’s literature:
There was an old woman who lived in a shoe who had so much equity (because our story, dear children, is set in Miami’s hot real estate market) that she upgraded the exterior to blue suede siding as a tribute to her idol, Elvis, moved her kids to a bootee out back, and then reopened the place as the “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” motel (but you’ll have to wait until you’re 18 to read any further). — Barbara Bridges, Sierra Madre, CA
Spectacular. I think my free time may be gone for good.