The red and yellow flag of the Snow Elves flapped violently as the winds raged tempestuously through the peaks of the Silver Mountains. The mountain range got its name due to the rocks that lay there. It was said that these stones glistened under the summer sun with such beauty that could be seen for miles. Though they were not shining now; nor had it done for many a year. Relentlessly the mistral wind assaulted the eleven village of Glynn that lay on a piece of flat land just below the peak. The Mountains were covered in a thick white duvet of snow, yet it had only turned autumn and the worst was still yet to come.
Below the setting sun and thick clouds lay the settlement. Its perimeter encased the village by means of an old stone wall; three meters high it scaled. The village consisted of sheltering for around eight hundred people, though now the population was less than half that. These lodgements were made of stone walls which were interwoven with wooden roofs. Such masonry craft built century’s before was required for dwellings to stay intact, especially during the bad weathered months.
I'm a professional editor and can help.
You open with a weather report, then the next line is data dump a la National Geographic.
Neither is a "hook" to make me want to hand over 7.99 to read what happens next. Weather reports and geography are background to a good story. Open with your characters. Open with something *interesting* happening.
Here's what you do: go into a bookstore, go to the SF&F aisle and open the first page of 50 different books and just read the first line of each.
Which ones grabbed you, made you want to read on and take it home? Those will be writers you can learn from.
You have to read at least 200 books before starting to write your own, so hit the library tomorrow.
One of my favorite novel starts:
The building was on fire and it wasn't my fault. -- Blood Rites by Jim Butcher
On the day Claire became a member of the Glass House, somebody stole her laundry. -- Glass House by Rachel Caine
The car was doing at least forty when the right front fender smashed against my left hip and sent me spinning off the road to flop bonelessly into a mass of thick, windblown grass. - Bloodlist by P.N. Elrod
Blood leaves no stain on a Warden’s grey cloak. I didn’t know that until the day I watched Morgan, second in command of the White Council’s Wardens, lift his sword over the kneeling form of a young man guilty of the practice of black magic. -- Proven Guilty, but Jim Butcher
And finally, the creepiest opening paragraph ever:
No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream. Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood so for eighty years and might stand for eighty more. Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors were sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone. -- The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
The rest of the book scared the socks off me and still does.
Library. READ. 200 books. (Then 200 more.) You'll be an awesome writer!
Example: What does this dream mean?
I dreamed I was on another planet. It was nighttime. I noticed that there were insects by the side of the road, looking much like the crickets, katydids, and moths we have on earth. I noticed the road appeared to be paved with asphalt, just like the ones we have on earth. I began walking down the road. Another man began walking beside me. We walked through the darkness until we came to a bend in the road, and then I noticed the bright lights of a big city. I saw a group of rough-looking men sitting on a bench. My companion suggested I sit down next to them, and the rough-looking men moved over to make room for me.
All I can remember is a guy holding a giant green praying mantis that starts eating a slightly larger than normal sized katydid...I was saying "don't let it eat it...it's a beneficial insect"...and then all the sudden, I'm lying on the ground being masturbated by a woman while my husband is watching us.
(I'm a woman. I had a bit of a drinking buzz on when I went to bed. I don't know if that matters or not.)
Example: How can I comfort my friend ?
My friend had a weird and sad and a scary dream last night. The first part of it was good because she got to see her favorite band in concert and dance with her favorite singer but then it got worse. She dreamed about katydids living under her mattress and those are not her favorite kind of bugs. She freaks out and runs away every time she sees one she doesn't even like saying the word. She thinks they're scary. Then she dreamed about a deer family and the mother and father deer were chased off by a gunshot and left the baby deer all alone. At first he was shot and had a hard time getting back up but I guess he was alright. Now she's afraid to go in the woods again. She said that it was so sad she cried in her sleep. Then she dreamed about her dad and her aunt and uncle and her riding on the four wheeler and her uncle was there too but her uncle died back in October I don't see how he could have been in her dream. But when she got home and tried to call him he didn't answer and he didn't come in the house with them she thought it was probably his ghost and she started crying. She said she cried in her sleep and she wasn't sleeping very well. She's been crying all morning too and she's been shaking a little bit. I guess that dream really scared her. She's wanting me to sleep with her tonight. How can I comfort her ? Should I sleep with her ? I'm 55 she's 20.
Example: What is ur favorite quote?
do you think enabled you to be who you want to be