ANSWERS: 64
  • "Life is difficult." From The Road Less Traveled. A very short, but very accurate sentence.
  • Marley was dead: to begin with.
  • Death is the beginning of eternity.
  • "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  • "It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen." From 1984, by George Orwell. I like the way this line strikes me, blindingly simple, yet almost surreal in a way.
  • I rather like the first line of Fall on Your Knees by Ann Marie MacDonald. It reads: "They're all dead now." She's brilliant with first lines, I'm pretty sure. She only has one other book, but its first line is pretty good also. It is: "The birds saw the murder." And the book is called The Way The Crow Flies.
  • "In a hole in the ground there lived a Hobbit." J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit.
  • Dear Penthouse,
  • "There was me, that is Alex and my three Droogs, that is Pete, Georgie and Dim."
  • In The Beginning...
  • "Call me Ismael" from moby dick
  • It was a dark and stormy night!
  • "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens.
  • "En un lugar de la Mancha, de cuyo nombre no quiero acordarme, no ha mucho tiempo que vivía un hidalgo de los de lanza en astillero, adarga antigua, rocín flaco y galgo corredor..." Translation: "Somewhere in la Mancha, in a place whose name I do not care to remember, a gentleman lived not long ago, one of those who has a lance and ancient shield on a shelf and keeps a skinny nag and a greyhound for racing..." Don Quixote - Miguel De Cervantes
  • "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way" - Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina
  • Call me Ishmael. Moby Dick
  • If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.
  • "Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday, I don't know." Loves that one! It's so... passive yet agressive and... it sticks in my mind... all the time. stoicism at its best.
  • She was the best lover I ever had. My favorite. Well, maybe not my favorite. Actually, some days I wish I never even met her.
  • Disregard...I effed up. =) I'll find one, I promise.
  • "Once upon a time...." It has to be the most re-used one and imo that makes it the best.
  • "she unbuttoned her blouse slowly, slowly to make me wait for the plesure that waited within, but then..."
  • "Tremble all worlds that be - the elves go to war once more." Shadows Fall, Simon R. Green not the most famous book, but it's my favourite.
  • The opening line of "Lady SIngs the Blues" by Billie Holliday. It was something like "Mum and dad were just a couple of kids when they got married. Dad was 18, mum was 16 and I was three." That sort of set the whole scene for Billie's sad life.
  • I asked this question back in February...
  • "The day began like any other day, except that I awoke as a cockroach."
  • http://www.bulwer-lytton.com/ just checked it. They've got a book out now-"A Dark and Stromy Night-a Collection of the Worst Fiction Ever Written" Actually Bulwer-Lytton (third time's the charm in spelling) was quite widely read in his day and has written some things that you (or you parents) may have heard of.
  • Phillapinos come fast.
  • It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
  • "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair."
  • He was born with the gift of laughter and the sense that the world was mad. From Scaramouche, by Raphael Sabatini. Unfortunately, it's all downhill from there...
  • "I don't want you to believe me." IN THE BLOOD: Jacyn's Journey - Book One by Steve Russell
  • "I write this sitting in the kitchen sink." - Dodie Smith from "I Capture the Castle"
  • "Lightning sought our mother out." by Jincey Willett The name of the book is "Winner of the National Book Award." However, it didn't actually win that award. Still, it's a marvelous first line to a very fine story.
  • Okay...I didn't mean to be lame and ask something someone already asked. Sorry. Go to this link... http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/141929 ...to answer the original asker. :)
  • "You bitch, you killed me! You suck!"
  • It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.
  • From Dennis Etchison's The Dead Line: "This morning I put ground glass in my wife's eyes".
  • "Once upon a time and a very good time it was there was a moocow coming down along the road and this moocow that was coming down along the road met a nicens little boy named baby tuckoo..." Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce. Brilliant.
  • That line posted by altreadia is the only opening line I know by heart. Thanks to Dickens.
  • "In" The bible. Thats as far as i read...it was boring :/
  • "His name was Remo, and he was ..." There are over a hundred books in this series and in the first chapter of each, they introduce the main mission ... in the second chapter of all of them, they reintroduce Remo, and describe what he was doing as his new mission is being formed. In the very first book, the first chapter starts with the Remo introduction ... .
  • Biography: "The earth teaches us more about ourselves than all the books in the world, because it is resistant to us." (Wind, Sand and Stars by Antoine de Saint-Exupery) Book of poetry: For the islands I sing and for a few friends; not to foster means or be midwife to ends. (George Mackay Brown's Collected Poems)
  • In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing.
  • My special thanks for all their help in making this possible to:
  • "There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide." - Myth of Sisyphus by Camus But in fiction, my favorite is "The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed."
  • "I am born." David Copperfield.
  • "Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again." - Daphne du Maurier's 'Rebecca'.
  • "It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen" 1984
  • Sort of long but you asked :) "No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream. Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood so for eighty years and might stand for eighty more. Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors were sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone." from 'The Haunting of Hill House '(1959) by Shirley Jackson
  • serene was a word you could put to brooklyn, new york - a tree grows in brooklyn
  • "Living in Des Moine is a bit like dancing with no music."
  • "Once upon a time.."
  • I think it was: I never would have become a fire eater if Flamo hadn't exploded that day. The Diary of a Sword Swallower by Daniel Mannix.
  • sorry this doesn't exactly answer your question, but... did you realize that your question is question #5555555? it says so in the URL.
  • “The beet is the most intense of vegetables. The radish, admittedly, is the more feverish, but the fire of the radish is a cold fire, the fire of discontent not passion. Tomatoes are lusty enough, yet there runs through tomatoes an undercurrent of frivolity. Beets are deadly serious.” - Tom Robbins “Jitterbug Perfume”
  • "What are you looking for in a typewriter?" the salesman asked. "Something more than words, " I replied. "Crystals. I want to send my reader armloads of crystals, some of which are the colors of orchids and peonies, some of which pick up radio signals from a secret city that is half Paris and half Coney Island." He recommended the Remington SL3. My old typewriter was named Olivetti. I know an extraordinary juggler named Olivetti. No relation. There is, however, a similarity between juggling and composing on my typewriter. The trick is, when you spill something, make it look like part of the act. I have in my cupboard, under lock and key, the last bottle of Anais Nin (green label) to be smuggled out of Punta del Visionario before the revolution. Tonight, I'll pull the cork. I'll inject 10 cc. into a ripe lime, the way natives do. I'll suck. And begin-- If this typewriter can't do it, I'll swear it can't be done. -- Tom Robbins "Still Life with Woodpecker"
  • "It was a dark and stormy night....." Snoopy writing a novel while sitting with his typewriter on his doghouse in the Peanuts Comic Strip.
  • "The countdown had stalled at T minus 69 seconds when Desiree, the first female ape to go up in space, winked at me slyly and pouted her thick, rubbery lips unmistakably -- the first of many such advances during what would prove to be the longest, and most memorable, space voyage of my career." --Martha Simpson, Glastonbury, Connecticut (1985 Winner of the Bulwer-Lytton fiction contest)
  • "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times; ..." A Tale of Two Cities -- Charles Dickens
  • "Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday, I don't know. I had a telegram from the home: 'Mother passed away. Funeral tomorrow. Yours sincerely.' That doesn't mean anything. It may have happened yesterday." -- Albert Camus "The Stranger"
  • "Once a guy stood all day shaking bugs from his hair. The doctor told him there were no bugs in his hair." A Scanner Darkly - Philip K. Dick
  • "If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where and when I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it." comes to mind.
  • No matter where you go, You always remain at the centre of your universe. (Futuroception)

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