I was thinking about the book The Last American Man by Elizabeth Gilbert. I love the first paragraph, and the rest is pretty good too. You can read the first chapter on the NY Times website. I recommend it. Over the years I have assigned students to read and imitate the first paragraph. It has great specifics, great parallelism, great comparisons, action, etc. Here, check it out:
By the time Eustace Conway was seven years old, he could throw a knife accurately enough to nail a chipmunk to a tree. By the time he was ten, he could hit a running squirrel at fifty feet with a bow and arrow. When he turned twelve, he went out into the woods, alone and empty-handed, built himself a shelter, and survived off the land for a week. When he turned seventeen, he moved out of his family’s home altogether and headed into the mountains, where he lived in a teepee of his own design, made fire by rubbing two sticks together, bathed in icy streams, and dressed in the skins of the animals he had hunted and eaten.
This move occurred in 1977, by the way. Which was the same year the film Star Wars was released.
Subscribe to Blog via Email