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The Writer's Guide to Beginnings by William Martin, Paula Munier

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Chapter Eight

Fine-Tuning Your Beginning

Bulletproof Your Beginning

“Bring all your intelligence to bear on your beginning.”

—Elizabeth Bowen

“If you start with a bang, you won’t end with a whimper.”

—T.S. Eliot

You’ve written your story now—from word one to Plot Point #1 and beyond. But are you ready for prime time? Before you start showing your work to publishing professionals, you need to bulletproof that work, especially the beginning, because it’s the beginning that agents and editors typically ask to see: the first page, the first ten pages, the first fifty pages, the first one hundred pages. And even should you prove lucky enough to be asked to submit your entire manuscript, the beginning is what people will read first—and last, if it ...

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