#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

As promised, #FirstLineFriday is back! We’ll have to see how it goes, but I’m aiming for every other week, and hope you guys will enjoy these little challenges that teach us so much about how to use opening lines effectively. This week, I’ve chosen one that I think will be fairly easy, but we’ll see if that turns out to be true or not.

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog. Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a mobi or PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Put on your thinking caps, because here is today’s opening line:

“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” 

Remember, email answers only,  please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

Motivation inscription of splash paint letters

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

I apologize for the long delay since our last #FirstLineFriday post, and hope you’ll understand that it wasn’t for lack of interest in offering one. I’m just way, way behind on everything. But, having said that, here I am today with one I hope you’ll enjoy.

Not sure whether this one will be ridiculously easy or crazy hard, but I have no doubt the answer won’t be unfamiliar to you.  So here’s your chance to try your hand at #FirstLineFriday, our little quiz designed to help us appreciate some of the best opening lines in literary history. As always, from the classics of long ago to the latest best-sellers, no matter how old or how recent, everything is fair game on #FirstLineFriday. Let’s see how many of you recognize this one.  

Also as always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog. Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a mobi or PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Put on your thinking caps, because here is today’s opening line:

If you want to find Cherry-Tree Lane all you have to do is ask the Policeman at the cross-roads. 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz, and the Name of Our Winner!

Submissions for #FirstLineFriday are officially closed now. My thanks to all who emailed me with their guesses. Today, we have one winner: Harmony Kent.  Congratulations, Harmony, and I hope you enjoy your prize.

Harmony’s Author Page can be found HERE. 

And now, here’s the answer to today’s quiz:

“Nobody was really surprised when it happened, not really, not at the subconscious level where savage things grow.” is the opening line of the epistolary novel, Carrie, by American author Stephen King.

 It was King’s first published novel, released on April 5, 1974, with a first print run of 30,000 copies. Set primarily in the future year of 1979, it revolves around the eponymous Carrie White, an unpopular friendless misfit and bullied high school girl from an abusive religious household who uses her newly discovered telekinetic powers to exact revenge on those who torment her.

During the process, she causes one of the worst local disasters the town has ever had. King has commented that he finds the work to be “raw” and “with a surprising power to hurt and horrify.” Much of the book uses newspaper clippings, magazine articles, letters, and excerpts from books to tell how Carrie destroyed the fictional town of Chamberlain, Maine while exacting revenge on her sadistic classmates and her own mother, Margaret.

Several adaptations of Carrie have been released, including a 1976 feature film, a 1988 Broadway musical as well as a 2012 off-Broadway revival, a 1999 feature film sequel, a 2002 television film, a 2013 feature film, and a 2018 television special episode of Riverdale. The book is dedicated to King’s wife Tabitha King: “This is for Tabby, who got me into it – and then bailed me out of it.”

WHAT AMAZON SAYS:

Stephen King’s legendary debut, about a teenage outcast and the revenge she enacts on her classmates.

Carrie White may be picked on by her classmates, but she has a gift. She can move things with her mind. Doors lock. Candles fall. This is her power and her problem. Then, an act of kindness, as spontaneous as the vicious taunts of her classmates, offers Carrie a chance to be normal…until an unexpected cruelty turns her gift into a weapon of horror and destruction that no one will ever forget.

Buy Carrie HERE

I think this particular line proves once again that while great opening lines can pull us into a story, it’s the tale, itself, that sticks with us in the long run.

And that wraps it up for this week, folks. Hoped you enjoyed playing along! Thanks so much for taking part, and stay tuned for another #FirstLineFriday quiz in two  weeks. See you then!

 

 

 

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

It’s been a couple of weeks, I know, and I apologize. I’m still trying to catch up, but mostly treading water right now. Lots going on in my life these days, even considering I’ve been trapped here at home for more than three months now. BUT. I was determined to get a #FirstLineFriday post out for you guys today, and voila! Here it is!

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog. Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a mobi or PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Put on your thinking caps, because here  is today’s opening line:

“Nobody was really surprised when it happened, not really, not at the subconscious level where savage things grow.”

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz

Submissions for #FirstLineFriday are officially closed now. My thanks to all who emailed me with their guesses. I knew this one would be difficult, but I had hoped one or two of you would get it. Alas, no one did this week, so without further ado, here’s the answer to today’s quiz:

“The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking as it seemed from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand” is the opening line from The Invisible Man, a science fiction novel written by H. G. Wells in 1897.

Originally serialized in Pearson’s Weekly in 1897, it was published as a novel the same year. The Invisible Man the title refers to is Griffin, a scientist who has devoted himself to research into optics and invents a way to change a body’s refractive index to that of air so that it neither absorbs nor reflects light and thus becomes invisible. He successfully carries out this procedure on himself, but fails in his attempt to reverse it. An enthusiast of random and irresponsible violence, Griffin has become an iconic character in horror fiction.

While its predecessors, The Time Machine and The Island of Doctor Moreau, were written using first-person narrators, Wells adopts a third-person objective point of view in The Invisible Man. The novel is considered very influential, and helped establish Wells as “the father of science fiction.”

 Wells said that his inspiration for the novella was “The Perils of Invisibility,” one of the Bab Ballads by W. S. Gilbert, which includes the couplet “Old Peter vanished like a shot/but then – his suit of clothes did not.”

The Invisible Man has a wealth of progeny. The novel was adapted into comic book form by Classics Illustrated in the 1950s, and by Marvel Comics in 1976. Many writers and filmmakers also created sequels to the story, something the novel’s ambiguous ending encourages. Over a dozen movies and television series are based on the novel, including a 1933 James Whale film and a 1984 series by the BBC. The novel has been adapted for radio numerous times, including a 2017 audio version starring John Hurt as the invisible man. The cultural pervasiveness of the invisible man has led to everything from his cameo in an episode of Tom and Jerry to the Queen song “The Invisible Man.”

EARLIEST FILM VERSION:
The Invisible Man is a 1933 American pre-Code science fiction horror film directed by James Whale. Based on H. G. Wells’ 1897 science fiction novel The Invisible Man and produced by Universal Pictures, the film stars Claude Rains, in his first American screen appearance, and Gloria Stuart. The film was written by R.C. Sherriff, along with Philip Wylie and Preston Sturges, though the latter duo’s work was considered unsatisfactory and they were taken off the project.

As an adaptation of a book, the film has been described as a “nearly perfect translation of the spirit of the tale” upon which it is based. The first film in Universal’s Invisible Man film series, it spawned a number of sequels and spin-offs which used ideas of an “invisible man” that were largely unrelated to Wells’ original story.

Rains portrayed the Invisible Man (Dr. Jack Griffin) mostly only as a disembodied voice. Rains is only shown clearly for a brief time at the end of the film, spending most of his on-screen time covered by bandages. In 2008, The Invisible Man was selected for the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”

PERSONAL NOTE: The image of the man covered by bandages (so you could see him) is why the phrase “thickly gloved hand” made me think of this movie as soon as I read the opening line. While I haven’t read the book, I’ve seen the early version of the movie (not when it was released in 1933, though. Even I’M not that old! 😀 ) and several adaptations over time.

 

Buy The Invisible Man HERE

And that takes care of our #FirstLineFriday for this week. This was a tough one, and I’m not surprised that we didn’t have a winner. However, I hope you enjoyed taking a look at that extraordinarily long and comma-filled opening line, and contrasting it with what most of us would do today.

Thanks so much for taking part, and I’ll be back with another #FirstLineFriday quiz in a week or two. (Still catching up, here.) See you then!

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

It’s Friday again, and though I’m not yet back to my normal weekly schedule, today has worked well for me to present you with another #FirstLineFriday quiz. As you know, this quiz is designed to help us appreciate some of the best opening lines in literary history. From the classics of long ago to the latest best-sellers, no matter how old or how recent, everything is fair game on #FirstLineFriday. Let’s see how many of you recognize (or can guess at) this one.  

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog. Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a mobi or PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

Remember, guesses are free and I am the only one who’ll know if you guess incorrectly, so go for it! And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Put on your thinking caps, because here is today’s opening line:

“The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking as it seemed from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand.” 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

It’s Friday again, which means you have another chance to try your hand at  #FirstLineFriday, our little quiz designed to help us appreciate some of the best opening lines in literary history. From the classics of long ago to the latest best-sellers, no matter how old or how recent, everything is fair game on #FirstLineFriday. Let’s see how many of you remember this one.  

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog. Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a mobi or PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! I’ve been easier on you this time, so put on your thinking caps, because here’s today’s opening line: 

“Blue Sargent had forgotten how many times she’d been told that she would kill her true love.” 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

 

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz, and the Names of Our Winners!

Submissions for #FirstLineFriday are officially closed now. My thanks to all who emailed me with their guesses. Today, we have two winners: Darlene Foster and Sarah Brentyn.  And I’ve decided to add a new feature to this Winner post: the link to each winner’s Author’s Page. I hope you’ll all enjoy being able to learn more about what these good folks have written and how to buy their books. And I also hope it inspires more of you to take a guess each week.

Darlene Foster’s Author Page can be found HERE.
Sarah Brentyn’s Author Page can be found HERE.

Congratulations to both of you, and I hope you enjoy your prizes.

And now, here’s the answer to today’s quiz:

“We were somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when the drugs began to take hold” is the opening line of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, a 1971 novel by Hunter S. Thompson and illustrated by Ralph Steadman.

The book is a roman à clef, rooted in autobiographical incidents. The story follows its protagonist, Raoul Duke, and his attorney, Dr. Gonzo, as they descend on Las Vegas to chase the American Dream through a drug-induced haze, all the while ruminating on the failure of the 1960s countercultural movement.

The work is Thompson’s most famous book, and is noted for its lurid descriptions of illegal drug use and its early retrospective on the culture of the 1960s. Its popularization of Thompson’s highly subjective blend of fact and fiction has become known as gonzo journalism.

The novel first appeared as a two-part series in Rolling Stone magazine in 1971, and was published as a book in 1972. It was later adapted into a film of the same title in 1998 by Terry Gilliam, starring Johnny Depp and Benicio del Toro who portrayed Raoul Duke and Dr. Gonzo, respectively. The novel lacks a clear narrative and frequently delves into the surreal, never quite distinguishing between what is real and what is only imagined by the characters.

NOTE: I wish I could tell you I’ve read the book or seen the movie, but even in 1971, it seemed a bit over the top for me. I do, however, think that opening line is a real grabber, and I’m glad we had some winners this week! 🙂 (And I must say, this cover certainly looks quite fitting. 😀 )


Buy Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas HERE

That wraps it up for this week, folks. Thanks so much for taking part, and I hope you’ll stay tuned for another #FirstLineFriday quiz next week. See you then!

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz, and the Names of Our Winners!

Submissions for #FirstLineFriday are officially closed now. My thanks to all who emailed me with their guesses. Today, we have 2 winners: Annabelle Franklin and Sarah Brentyn.  Congratulations, and I hope you enjoy your prize, Annabelle. (Sadly, I couldn’t talk Sarah into accepting one, but I’m still happy she knew the answer, and wanted to play, anyway.)

And now, here’s the answer to today’s quiz:

“There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife” is the opening line to The Graveyard Book,  a young adult fantasy novel by the English author Neil Gaiman, simultaneously published in Britain and America in 2008. The Graveyard Book traces the story of the boy Nobody “Bod” Owens who is adopted and reared by the supernatural occupants of a graveyard after his family is brutally murdered.

Gaiman won both the British Carnegie Medal and the American Newbery Medal recognizing the year’s best children’s books, the first time both named the same work. The Graveyard Book also won the annual Hugo Award for Best Novel from the World Science Fiction Convention and Locus Award for Best Young Adult Book selected by Locus magazine subscribers. (As an aside, Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite authors, and this book is a good reason why. It is well worth the read, even if the genre is not one you regularly choose.)

AMAZON SAYS:

Neil Gaiman’s perennial favorite, The Graveyard Book, has sold more than one million copies and is the only novel to win both the Newbery Medal and the Carnegie Medal. This middle grade novel is an excellent choice for tween readers in grades 5 to 6, especially during homeschooling. It’s a fun way to keep your child entertained and engaged while not in the classroom. (Note: It is also a lot of fun for us grown-ups, too, as you might guess from the number of awards it won, including that Hugo Award for Best Novel.)

Bod is an unusual boy who inhabits an unusual place—he’s the only living resident of a graveyard. Raised from infancy by the ghosts, werewolves, and other cemetery denizens, Bod has learned the antiquated customs of his guardians’ time as well as their ghostly teachings—such as the ability to Fade so mere mortals cannot see him.

Can a boy raised by ghosts face the wonders and terrors of the worlds of both the living and the dead?

The Graveyard Book is the winner of the Newbery Medal, the Carnegie Medal, the Hugo Award for best novel, the Locus Award for Young Adult novel, the American Bookseller Association’s “Best Indie Young Adult Buzz Book,” a Horn Book Honor, and Audio Book of the Year.

Buy The Graveyard Book HERE

That wraps it up for this week, folks. Thanks so much for taking part, and I hope you’ll stay tuned for another #FirstLineFriday quiz next week. See you then!

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

Two weeks in a row! We’re on a roll with  #FirstLineFriday, our little quiz designed to help us appreciate some of the best opening lines in literary history. Told ya I was gonna do my best to catch up on things here at The Write Stuff, and I’m working on it! As usual, from the classics of long ago to the latest best-sellers, everything is fair game on #FirstLineFriday, and I have an interesting and slightly newer line for you today.

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog.Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Put on your thinking caps, because here’s today’s opening line: 

”There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.” 

Well—whaddya think? Sound familiar? DON’T forget, it costs nothing to guess, but do remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses.