Footnotes: 5 Articles on Writing Those First Pages

“There’s nothing to writing. 
All you do is sit down at
a typewriter and open a vein.” 
~ Walter Wellesley “Red” Smith

Footnotes is a recurring series on the GLA blog where I pick a subject and provides several interesting articles on said topic. You never get a second chance to make a first impression that goes for the first page of your manuscript too. Today I’m serving up five articles to help you make that first page count!


1. Agents tell all.
Here on Chuck’s GLA blog, freelancer Livia Blackburne discusses the 7 reasons why agents stop reading your first pages.

2. Kids must sound like kids. Writer Anne Spollen asks teens why they stop reading. The number one response: “It doesn’t sound like anyone they know.”

3. Great examples of openings. Can you guess the book that claims these openings? On the Blue Rose Girl Blog, writer Libby Koponen includes seven openings that have at least one thing in common, they each thrust the reader into the story. Check out part one and two of this post.

4. Secrets from editors at an SCBWI event. Writer Tara Lazar recounts common problems children’s book editors find when they critique first pages.

5. General opening tips. WD editor Jane Friedman discusses the big mistake you want to avoid in your story opening.

This guest series by writer
Nancy Parish, who runs her
blog, The Sound and Furry.


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