In the same spirit as the 2007 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, one of my oldest and dearest writing friends, Kerry Blair, sponsored her own worst first line contest. The prize, besides a vintage copy of Bulwer-Lytton’s most famous work: The Last Days of Pompeii, was a fabulous six-figure cash award. (The figure is – you guessed it – $000,000!)
I am bursting with pride (sort of) to tell you all that I won. Or as my husband put it, “So this proves without a doubt that you can write badly?”
Yes, it does.
If I never receive another writing accolade (and to tell you the truth the accolade shelf in my den is pretty empty except for those World’s Best Mom pictures the kids occasionally draw me) this one will make me happy.
Here is my winning entry along with some pretty good runner’s uppers. (Or however one phrases that.)
Alicia's lips were bright red--the exact color of that little button on turkey timers that pops up when the turkey is done--only Alicia never knew that, because she was a strict vegan and just made tofu turkey on Thanksgiving, which of course doesn't have an actual little turkey timer button, but everyone else who saw her thought, "Ahh, the turkey is done."
He was in love with her, loved her like he loved lasagna, not just any lasagna, especially not the vegetarian kind, but the meaty juicy savory kind with extra cheese, and he could tell by the way her face flushed like steaming marinara sauce underneath a thick layer of melted ricotta that she must feel the same way; he only hoped that their love didn’t end like his love with lasagna always ended, filled with excruciating pain on the toilet.
Lucy’s brown eyes were like two chocolate chip cookies, only burnt and made with mint chocolate chips used rather than milk chocolate, making swirls of dirtied-green in her dark and stormy glare for only a moment ago she had received the heartbreak of her teenage life; “CHAD IZ N LUV W BRT-NY” came the ominous text from her best friend followed by an obligatory “R U OK?” Lucy was sure she would never love again.