Tag Archives: opening words of novel

If At First You Don’t Succeed – Part II (for Trifecta)

Trifecta Writing Prompt for the Weekend

Take one of your former 33 word entries and build upon it with another 33 words.

I haven’t taken on Trifecta in a while but this weekend’s prompt spoke to me. It said …“Get off your fat ass and join the party, slack jaw. People are going to forget you even EXIST if you don’t get back into the game again. Seriously, freak show, put down that apple-sized ball of cheese and get out of bed.”

I know! That’s what I thought, too. This weekend’s prompt is a total jerk.

Still, it got me thinking. And the gears in my tired brain started turning. Rustily, yes. There was even a little smoke for a few minutes there. Then, it finally spat out the following idea: If At First You Don’t Succeed. I wrote it in July 2012 for the Trifecta prompt that asked us to “Give the first 33 words of your book.” Here’s how it went:

He woke to the smell of a hot breakfast. Opening his eyes, he saw the walls of his childhood bedroom. The Gong Show desk calendar said 1977. He was 8. “Not again,” thought Henry Beckett, 43.

It seemed like the perfect story to continue for this weekend’s prompt. And so I did.

He leapt down from the top bunk, panic-stricken. The deposition, his anniversary dinner, his son’s championship game … he’d miss all of them again if he didn’t think fast. “Henry … breakfast!” called his mother.

Actually, the title is ironic when you consider the fact that I’m taking a second shot at writing the same story. Thanks, Trifecta. You’re helping me finally get moving with this writing thing. I’ve got 66 words under my belt now. And the average novel length is only about 80,000 words. (laughs like a buffoon) Shoot. I should be done by Tuesday.