Below is a selection of opening sentences from well-known novels. In groups of 4, write a story starting with one of these sentences (allotted by the teacher). Choose a writer in your group. The writer will remain in the same spot throughout the whole writing process acting as a secretary. Tell him what to write. When the teacher says change (after 5 minutes), the rest of the group move on to the next writer who will read his story and ask them what to write next. When each group has contributed to all the stories, the writers will read their stories to the class.
You do not have to make your stories anything like the original – it's all up to you and your imagination!
- It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. (1984, George Orwell)
- In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since. (The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald)
- It was the wrong number that started it, the telephone ringing three times in the dead of night, and the voice on the other end asking for someone he was not. (The New York Trilogy, Paul Auster)
- Yesterday, I found Violet's letter to Bill (What I Loved, Siri Hustvedt)
- I had just come to accept that my life would be ordinary when extraordinary things began to happen. (Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, Ransom Riggs)
- The week before I left my family and Florida and the rest of my minor life to go to boarding school in Alabama, my mother insisted on throwng me a going-away party. (Looking for Alaska, John Green)
- Most days I wish I was a British pound coin instead of an African girl. (The Other Hand, Chris Cleave)
- I sent one boy to the gas chamber at Huntsville. (No Country for Old Men, Cormac McCarthy