Write 25 first lines for your novel.
Jot them down quickly (you already have a first line, and you’re working on a book, so you know where you’re going–this will be an easy exercise), a minute or less per line.
That first line is a promise to your reader. It can show voice, hint at character and plot, show mood and it certainly should grab the reader.
So what are you doing with YOUR book opening?
Remember, Richard Peck (LONG WAY FROM CHICAGO, A YEAR DOWN YONDER) says, “You are no better than your first line.”
Once Richard read the first few pages of my novel that is under consideration right now. “You don’t have your best first line,” he said. He was right. I chopped off the first paragraph AND learned a valuable lesson from a great writer.