the lytton awards

The reason I quoted the tight and well-organized prose of Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton yesterday is because I nearly split my sides laughing when I came over the Lyttle Lytton awards. The competition is for making the absolute worst possible first line for a novel ever. There's some really strong entries. This year's winner:

* John, surfing, said to his mother, surfing beside him, "How do you like surfing?"

But honestly, I think this years awards was a low water-mark to the previous years, so read all the entries. Some personal favourites:

* Jennifer stood there, quietly ovulating.

* "Tasty waffle?" Jim suggested alluringly, prodding me with the afore-mentioned breakfast food.

* I know who the murderer is, Kevin blogged.

* Juicy, their love was like forbidden fruit: tasty.

* Sing, O Muse, of Tiffany's wrath on Triple Coupon Day.

* In anticipation, John licked his own lips.

* The night passed like a kidney stone: painfully and with the help of major sedatives.

* Turning, I mentally digested all of what you, the reader, are about to find out heartbreakingly.

It's almost like poetry. In fact, one could argue (Roman Jakobson might've) that it is poetry, packing so much badness into sentences. This is artfully crafted, compact, effective badness.

[Update: Teresa Nielsen-Hayden got to it before I did, damnit. Here's her take on it.]


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