First lines are so important!
There are so many great examples of great first lines - one of my favourites is It was a pleasure to burn from Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. Love its simplicity and how much it tells of the story without being complex or bogging me down.
Styles change and currently it seems popular first lines are fairly short. The main character is often involved. There's usually something intriguing or unique to pull you in. Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book begins There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife. No main character but it is pure Awesome! My MG & YA readers gobble it up!
One of my favourite all time books is Anne of Green Gables. It was written in 1908 and the styles were definitely different. The first line is over 100 words long, doesn't mention the main character (I don't think Anne shows up until Chapter 2) and includes 3 semi-colons. Most agents and readers today would pass it right by!
I'm getting better at writing those first lines. Like many other writers, I revise that first line and scene many times before I'm satisfied. And then I do it some more.
How about you, do you have any favourite first lines? Do you find them easy to write?
I'm over at From the Write Angle today talking about first lines in a query - how do you hook that agent??? I hope you'll pop over and join the discussion!