The Trouble With First Lines

Almost two years ago, I decided to begin 168 Hours with these words: “Tuesday, July 14, 2009, was a good day.” It was a good day — though I had to cast around for a while to figure out how I wanted to get into the idea that lives are made up of hours, and how we choose to spend our hours determines the shape of our lives. That was a day I spent a high proportion of hours on things that mattered to me. That made it a good day.

I am still trying to figure out what the first line will be of All The Money In The World. I am most likely starting with the story — from one of the email lists I’m on — of a family that experienced a sudden acquisition of wealth. Many of us have long fantasized about what we’d do if only we had enough. But what if we did? Then what?

Anyway, I know it will come to me eventually, but this is always a frustrating part of the writing process. You can spend hours on mere sentences, while other whole chapters seem to merely take minutes. There is only so much efficiency to be had!

Though, speaking of which, I wanted to include a few links in this post (I’ll be on the road tomorrow and not posting):


2 thoughts on “The Trouble With First Lines

  1. Mrs. Vanderkam,
    I loved your book, I own it and do my best to follow sage advise.
    I love your Blog for it’s candor and most of all it’s human HUMOR, you are a person that realizes that it’s a 24/168 world and doesn’t decise that we’re human and lfe can present all kinds of challenges that we’re unprepared for or just plan missed.
    I look forward to your newest publication

    Sue pierce
    South Bend, Ind.

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