Saturday, June 4, 2005

Sunrise, Sunset

Last night as I was thinking about my entry for today, I got to thinking about all of the things that I compare to others. We do this a lot, don't we? McDonalds or Burger King? Pepsi or Coke? Fiction or Non-fiction?

This way of thinking led over into my morning as I was driving to work and stopping to get something to eat for lunch. I am a grinder (or sub sandwich in the midwest) junkie. This carries over from my days spent out in the Boston area where grinders are king! My favorite kind of sub is the steak and cheese. Now, in my opinion, nothing compares to the steak and cheese that I used to get at D'Angelos in Natick, Mass. I got the Number Nine sub and I got it weekly. I loved those sandwiches. Mmmm! Alas, we don't have D'Angelos here because it is an East Coast-based chain. So, where to get my steak and cheese? Subway? Blimpies? I actually prefer Sub City in downtown Waterloo, which is where I stopped this morning for my fill. But I still miss my D'Angelos.

So, my thoughts last night about comparing and contrasting...I got to thinking about my first sentence "thing". Usually, I keep track of the first sentences as I read them but then I started just thinking about first sentences in general. And as I stood before my shelves of books that I have not yet read, I thought of all the first sentences there that I've not yet seen. So, I took a book down off the shelf and just opened it up and read the first sentence. Then, I took down another. And another. But then I got to the one that is posted below, double checked to see what book I was reading, and shook my head. I'll explain in a minute.

The first sentence is:
One midwinter day off the coast of Massachusetts, the crew of a mackerel schooner spotted a bottle with a note in it.

Now, one thing I love about first sentences is the envisioning of where that first sentence will lead you. Does it tell you anything about the story that is about to unfold? Does it reel you in and make you want more? Is it the right first sentence?
When I said that I had to double check to see what book I was reading I had to do just that, because the above first sentence makes me think of MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE by Nicholas Sparks but I knew I had a different book.
MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE by Nicholas Sparks starts off:
A cold December wind was blowing, and Theresa Osborne crossed her arms as she stared out over the water.

So, what book was I reading from you wonder? The book is THE PERFECT STORM by Sebastian Junger, something completely different from a Nicholas Sparks book, yet their first sentences could be interchangeable.

Makes you stop and think, huh? That's where my passion comes from.

No comments: