Recently, I’ve really enjoyed using the first line of various novels as starting points for my writing prompts, so I decided to compile this list of 7 wondrous first line writing prompts.


It’s interesting to see how another’s words can inspire you, direct you, and motivate you to find something new, and help you to create a whole new world. Use the line however it seems to work for you – be it your first line, a line in your text, or just as a source of inspiration. Draw from it, how you will.


Here are my recent favourites of first liners; use these prompts to direct your writing practice for 5 to 15 minutes – whichever time limit you have time for, each day this week:


  1. ”The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.” — L. P. Hartley, The Go-Between (1953)
  2. “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” — George Orwell, 1984 (1949)
  3.  “All this happened, more or less.” —Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five (1969)
  4.  “All children, except one, grow up.” J. M. Barrie, Peter Pan (1911)
  5.  “This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it.” —William Goldman, The Princess Bride (1973)
  6. “If you are interested in stories with happy endings, you would be better off reading some other book.” —Lemony Snicket, Daniel Handler, A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning (1999)
  7. “Behind every man now alive stand thirty ghosts, for that is the ratio by which the dead outnumber the living.” —Arthur C. Clarke, 2001 – A Space Odyssey (1968)


Do you like this week’s prompts? What first line prompts do you like to use?


Happy Writing 😉





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