Write the First Sentence Last

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The first sentence may be king, but write it last.

While study the craft of writing, I often heard the first sentence is king. The advice about the first sentence relayed that an intriguing first sentence captures the reader. Tutors and texts along a similar vein stated, depending on the length of the work, an author needed to hook the reader by the end of the first paragraph or page.

As a result, I agonized over the beginning of the story to the point of giving myself writer’s block. I wanted to get the perfect beginning before confirming where the story went.

Listening to Writing Excuses Season 10 changed my approach to the beginning. The hosts said write the first sentence last. The beginning of the story often changes as the plot changes. The simple statement sounded obvious after hearing it.

I struggle with other aspects of writing and nailing the beginning is still important. Since I understand that the beginning changes as the story changes, I no longer agonize over it until after completing a couple of passes of the story.

Resource: Writing Excuses 10.17 Q & A on Beginnings

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