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The Something Awful Forums > Main > General Bullshit > Awsome Opening Lines/Paragraphs

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Who posted?

All_Rush_Mixed_Tape
Jul 05, 2007
somerbilliards posted:
and a 2 litre bottle of Shasta There can be only one:

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

Right away, you are thrown off of your horse, and the book is the one calling the shots. Gotta love Orwell.

Somerbilliards, I have to agree that this thread would not be complete without that line. I don't know if I have ever read a line that has so completely worked its way into my memory without any real attention from me.

I second the request for the source of the goldfish line - anybody?

And now, I have to admit that I have poked through many of my favorite books, and find few if any that thrill me with the first line. The only thing I can find is from Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman, and the line isn't that memorable
without the context of the book. "The night before he went to London, Richard Mayhew was not enjoying himself."

1 # ? Aug 06, 2007 17:08 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

The Picnic Scene "LISTEN:


Jul 28, 2007
Billy Pilgrim has come unstuck in time."

If you don't know what its from, you should be very very ashamed of yourself.

by Ozma

1 # ? Aug 06, 2007 17:44 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Bookish
Sep 07, 2006
quote:
When Mary Lennox was sent to Misselthwaite Manor to live with her uncle everybody said she was the most disagreeable-looking child ever seen. It was true, too.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

quote:
I like work. It fascinates me. I A surging, seething, murmuring crowd of beings that are human only in name, for to the eye and ear they seem naught but savage creatures, animated by vile passions and by the lust of vengeance and of hate.
can sit and look at it for hours.

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy

1 # ? Aug 06, 2007 17:47 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Habibi This was quite possibly my favorite opening to a book ever, (though it did not turn out to be my favorite book):
Dec 08, 2004

There is a cheer. The gnomes quote:


have learned a new way to say, They set a slamhound on Turner's trail in New Dehli, slotted to his pheromones and the color of his hair. It caught up with him on a street named Chandni Chauk and came scrambling for his rented BMW through a forest of
"Hooray."
bare brown legs and pedicab tires. Its core was a kilogram of recrystalized hexogene and flaked TNT.
He didn't see it coming. The last he saw of India was the pink stucco facade of a place called the Khush-Oil Hotel.
Because he had a good agent, he had a good contract. Because he had a good contract, he was in Singapore an hour after the explosion. Most of him, anyway. The Dutch surgeon liked to joke about that, how an unspecified
percentage of Turner hadn't made it out of Palam International on that first flight and had to spend the night there in a shed, in a support vat.
It took the Dutchman and his team three months to put Turner together again. They cloned a square meter of skin for him, grew it on slabs of collagen and shark-cartilage polysaccharides. They bought eyes and genitals on the
open market. The eyes were green.

Count Zero, by William Gibson.

1 # ? Aug 06, 2007 17:57 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

a-dogg Well, since this thread has become about existing opening lines and paragraphs, I'll share Thucydides's History of the Peloponnesian War (Penguin Classics edition, trans. Rex Warner):
Sep 29, 2005

quote:
Thucydides the Athenian wrote the history of the war fought between Athens and Sparta, beginning the account at the very outbreak of the war, in the belief that it was going to be a great war and more worth writing about
than any of those which had taken place in the past.

Weekend Warrior

1 # ? Aug 08, 2007 23:04 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Glow Worm
Mar 18, 2007
Choke by Chuck Palahniuk posted:
If you're going to read this don't bother.
After a couple pages, you won't want to be here. So forget it. Go away. Get out while you're still in one piece.
Save yourself.
There has to be something better on television. Or since you have so much time on your hands, maybe you could take a night course. Become a doctor. You could probably make something out of yourself. Treat yourself to a
dinner out. Color your hair.
You're not getting any younger.
What happens here is first going to piss you off. After that it just gets worse and worse.
No, it is not a political
statement.
It keeps going, but I am going to stop now. Choke by Chuck Palakhniuk

1 # ? Aug 08, 2007 23:30 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

SumoPopeII "YES!" I shout as I defeat Pycho Mantis.


Jul 01, 2007

I do not feel the low rumbling as I exult in my victory, and when I finally do, I try and adjust the bass. *click* *click* Nothing. Earthquake, I wonder?
Registered Abuser

Then I see the swastika on a monumental turrent of steel rumble past the window. Again, and again, endless and legion, in near-harmony with the singing in german.

"Fuck."

Starting the '77 Trans-am I pray I can only beat them to the base and use the time-radio to alert the Soviets to send their armies both back and forward in time to this day.

1 # ? Aug 08, 2007 23:39 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Jenefarious American Gods


Feb 22, 2006

Shadow had done three years in prison. He was big enough and looked don't-fuck-with-me enough that his biggest problem was killing time. So he kept himself in shape, and taught himself coin tricks, and thought alot about how much
Is there a problem officer?
he loved his wife.

one of my favorite books. The next bit was written by a goon and is the first paragraph of You Blockhead!

I wake up in a haze, struggle to sit upright. I'm a mess. Broken bottles next to me, and a heart to match. The alcohol gave me the sweet release I craved. My escape route, my ticket away from the cruelty and deceit at the hands of this
raven-haired she-devil. They're malevolent creatures, women, and this bitch took the cake. She'd flip her hair, or giggle, or shed a tear or two, anything to lure me in. Fool that I am, I believed her, every time. She seemed to get a kick
out of giving me the faintest glimmer of hope, and then taking it away, leaving me laying in the dirt. She crushed me, over and over. The image of her standing over me, sneering at the pathetic heap at her feet, it's burned into my
eyes. I see it every time I nod off, whenever I hold my head in my hands and lament my existence. She knows she makes every waking moment hell. She knows I'm too dumb to figure a way out of the circle she's got me going in. She
tells me I disgust her, tells me I'm lucky she sticks around, like she's doing me a favor. Day in, day out, and I take it like the whipping boy I am.
Jenefarious fucked around with this message at Aug 09, 2007 around 00:18

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 00:13 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Danny Cadaver It is a curious phenomenon that occurs in human behavior, when an entire group, with no prior interaction or conspiratorial planning, ignores the paths provided, the rules given, and blazes off into a parade of a tangent. Rebelliousness
Jun 29, 2007 is ingrained in the psyche of men, in the group mentality that placed homo sapiens onto the throne of the world, as is not understanding the instructions written in the first fucking post.
Who do the voodoo?

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 00:23 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

1 of 3 24/08/2008 17:54
Awsome Opening Lines/Paragraphs http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=2582345&us...

SumoPopeII
Jul 01, 2007
Danny Cadaver posted:
Registered Abuser It is a curious phenomenon that occurs in human behavior, when an entire group, with no prior interaction or conspiratorial planning, ignores the paths provided, the rules given, and blazes off into a parade of a tangent.
Rebelliousness is ingrained in the psyche of men, in the group mentality that placed homo sapiens onto the throne of the world, as is not understanding the instructions written in the first fucking post.

That's excellent, where'd that come from?

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 00:35 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Farmerjeb Past the grove of cypress tress Walter - he had been playing king of the mountain - saw the white truck, and he knew it was for what it was. He thought, That's the abortion truck. Come to take some kid in for a postpartum down and
Jan 15, 2006 the abortion place.

The Pre-Persons
-Philip K. Dick

... a long off-season of sexual


reassignment surgery.

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 00:42 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Bredtt "As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect."
Apr 14, 2005
From Franz Kafka's "The Metamorphosis"

One bad ass mother Tucker

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 00:47 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Chromis
Feb 04, 2004
HelterSkeletor posted:
And here's mine:

Ricky the viking warrior rode upon the highland of the planet Vorplor on a mighty steed. He didn't so much mind the eight moons as much as the rampant rash invading his crotch like the orcish hordes that he had slaughtered
lo these many years. The environment of this planet was full of crotch rot-inducing fungi, and there was no way to stop them. Ricky began to worry that he would die of crotch rot before he could confront the dragon who had
caputred princess Neptilda. The dragon's name: Richard Nixon. Eight crotch-rot covered demons approached on the horizon. Today would be a day of heroes. And the stuff that heroes do.
Logic is wreath of pretty
flowers that smell bad.

Got to hand it to you dude, that's way better than mine.

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 03:27 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

zarbicore
Mar 13, 2004
Wa11y posted:
From Steven King's The Dark Tower series.

Best opening line ever.

The sun sets forever over


Blackwater Park

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 03:29 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Mister Kingdom John Varley's Steel Beach:


Dec 14, 2005

John Varley posted:


"In five years, the penis will become obsolete," said the salesman.

He paused to let this planet-shattering information sink into our amazed brains. Personally, I didn't know how many more wonders I could absorb before lunch.

It's so nice to be insane,


I love this book.
no one asks you to explain

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 03:37 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Floppy I'm not quite sure if we're making our own up or posting others, but I'll just make my own up...
Jul 20, 2007

Floppy posted:
He stood defiant in the darkness as the garage door rose up slowly. He couldn't hear it, the music was up too loud. He squinted slightly as the garage door finally rose up enough to accommodate something close to his height,
he ducked under and walked into another day.

by Eris Is Goddess I'm too unoriginal to write something about a viking so I wrote about myself.

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 03:48 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Mest0r From The Death of Artemio Cruz by Carlos Fuentes:


Apr 28, 2006
"I wake up... The touch of that cold object against my penis wakes me up. I didn't know I could urinate without being aware of it."

I love the book, even though the first time through it's a bitch to read because you don't understand anything and it just feels like a bunch of senseless babble.

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 04:26 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Fetid Grogan From A Fortunate Life by Bert Facey:


Dec 10, 2006
I first saw the light of day in London, in 1906. It doesn't seem to have been an earth-shattering event - no bolts of lightning, no earthquakes, nothing whatever of a cataclysmic nature. Maybe just a muffled pop.
Smells offensive but in a good
way

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:03 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Malleus Maleficarum This morning, just after 11:00, Michael locked himself in his office and he won't come out.
Jul 24, 2007
Bill (Bill!) sent Michael this totally wicked flame-mail from hell on the e-mail system--and he just whaled on a chunk of code Michael had written. Using the Bloom County-cartoons-taped-on-the-door index, Michael is certainly the most
sensitive coder in Building Seven--not the type to take criticism easily. Exactly why Bill would choose Michael of all people to whale on is confusing.

We figured it must have been a random quality check to keep the troops in line. Bill's so smart.

Bill is wise.
Bill is kind.
where is coin heaven
Bill is benevolent.
Bill, Be My Friend... Please!

Microserfs by Douglas Coupland

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:15 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Danny Cadaver
Jun 29, 2007
SumoPopeII posted:
Who do the voodoo? That's excellent, where'd that come from?

Um, this thread.

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:30 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

2 of 3 24/08/2008 17:54
Awsome Opening Lines/Paragraphs http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=2582345&us...

BearVsGorilla
Mar 29, 2003
Nuclear Pogostick posted:
"Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice." - One Hundred Years of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez

I was going to come with this and add


"It was inevitable, the scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love." Love in the Time of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:34 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Athazagoraphobia "What's it going to be then, eh?"


Jan 30, 2005

We built this kitty. We built this


kitty on rock and roll!

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:44 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Vicissitude I suppose you could call this a love story, if you really wanted to. I mean, sure, two people meet each other and fall headlong, full-blown into love. But that's not where the story is. This is a story about consequences, decisions and the
Thread Poster effects of those decisions. The love, as it often is, is incidental.
Jan 26, 2004

I set myself on fire. So they


couldn't grab me. That's ninja
thinkin'!

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:51 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

TheAgent Mr. Harris is dead. He's dead just a few hours ago, dead right out of this place. Now, that ain't nothing new. But Mr. Harris there, he walked to his death; he sits up, right there outside, no help, no cane, no arms to lean on, just right up
Feb 16, 2002 and walked, right up and right on into some nice woman's Honda. Mile-a-fuck away, he's dead. Mile to Mr. Harris, well, a mile to him must be a fucking snail mile, like. Real long, no doubt.

The call is coming from inside


Dr. House

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 05:54 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

MA-Horus
Dec 03, 2006
Bredtt posted:
"As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect."

From Franz Kafka's "The Metamorphosis"

Motherfucker, I hate that god-damn book.


I'm sorry, I can't hear you over
the sound of how awesome I
am.

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 06:22 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

Jenefarious As for contributing original content:


Feb 22, 2006 __________________________________________________________________________
Is there a problem officer?
He stood at the corner of lost and nowhere as the cars rushed by in the hiss of tires on gray pavement. Seconds, minutes, hours stacking up like tarnished coins, useless currency that couldn’t be spent. He could see the eyes of the
drivers light upon him and just as quickly flit away. Others passing on the sidewalk avoided his gaze when he looked directly at them, but he could feel the weight of the glances just the same, small dusty stones pressed briefly against
him, pushing him, urging him to go away, stop reminding us there are others out there who measure time differently, who treasures every second because time is finite and everyone has a different amount left to spend.
“That’s okay.”, he whispered to himself, wrapping his hand around the battered .22 snugged deep in his jacket pocket. “Six rounds, six rounds, six rounds-you can teach six people they should have taken time, made time, not thrown it
away, wasted it, killed it.” He smiled then, marking people with his eyes and pulling out the gun, began the lesson.

______________________________________________________________

1 # ? Aug 09, 2007 18:56 Profile Post History Ban History Add Coloring/Note Hide Avatar

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