The First Page Rule!

The beginnings of the world’s best books! What do they show us?

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way. . . .”

Gone With the Wind by Margret Mitchell

“Scarlett O’Hara was not beautiful, but men seldom realized it when caught by her charm as the Tarleton twins were”

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

“There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife”

The Book Thief by Markus Zusask

“First the colors.

Then the humans.

That’s usually how I see things.

Or at least, how I try.”

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

“Mr and Mrs Dursley, of number four Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.”

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife”

I think you get the idea! The first page and even first sentence are the most important part of a good novel!

The point of this is to explain something that my Aunt Alice told me about a few years ago- something that has helped me make the right book choices in the years that followed. I gave it a name- the first page rule.  It means when you pick up a book, you read the first page.  If you unknowingly turn the page and continue reading, then you should read the book! But if you are bored- if you would rather check out how you need a manicure or that other inviting book staring at you from over there- then put it down.

This has saved me from reading books I have no interest in ever since she told me that! I suggest you do the same, it is a very useful technique when choosing one book from a well stocked bookstore! Also, if you are a writer, you might want to think about this.  Would someone want to continue reading after the first page? Is there too much detail? Not enough? Now, what do I know, because I am not a writer, at least not yet.  But I know one thing I am, and that’s a reader.

If you try this, let me know what you think!

🙂 Olivia



Filed under Classic, Fiction, Modern Fiction, Romance

8 responses to “The First Page Rule!

  1. kzackuslheureux

    Miss Olivia, you are my worst nightmare! Not really, but I am a grate producer of a deep-ended story, however I can’t offer a decent beginning to save my life! Well, at least I don’t think I can… I have a couple of sample chapters on my blog, and one person did say they were lured in… but I have finally decided to finish a story then go back and try to write the first page! Best Regards Sweetheart, KL

    • Haha! I’ll definitely hop over to your blog tomorrow and check out those sample chapters and then let you know what I think! I’m sure your beginning is great, often people (especially writers and other artists) sell themselves short! Could you link to those chapters for me?
      Thanks for commenting! Olivia

      • kzackuslheureux

        ah, what a doll. No, I think you’ll agree, my beginings need some work. As much as I love me some Jane A. I know only of telling fairy tale adventures. If you know David Eddings’ Begaraid, I’d say I’ve aimed somewhere between there and Narnia, with perhaps a little more “woman” a.k.a. romance, perhaps, in the text. I am so new to this blog thing, but I will try to get you those links under this one condition. You don’t know me, I’m a stranger, feel free to be harsh! I’m too old to mind.

      • Narnia+romance= I’d read that! And I am even newer to this blogging thing, but I love it so far!
        I followed your link to the first chapter- thanks for that by the way- and read the preface and the first chapter. The preface was pretty good- but sometimes I felt myself wondering why it was the preface and not just the first chapter of the book. It almost made more sense to read it with that frame of mind, but I’m sure you have your reasons. I think the story line is good one from what I can tell, but it was somewhat confusing because there were things that were mentioned that I didn’t know about. Kind of like there was another book before this one and I didn’t read it.
        I liked the first chapter more than the preface because it was easier to follow and there was still more time for character development. I’d suggest trying to make it a little simpler and easier to understand and making the plot move on a little faster. I like it very much for all of my critiques and would love to read it in print someday!
        Olivia 😀

      • kzackuslheureux

        Thanks for taking the time to read it! Perhaps you’re right about that, but like I said, I’m terrible with beginnings! Have fun on the blogging!

      • No problem! Just keep working on it, it seems like a great idea!

  2. Pingback: My unfinished books pile « bookananda

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