The First Line

Recently I stumbled across a really awesome literary magazine called The First Line.  The entire premise is that they offer up the first line of a story, and every writer takes that line and starts a story off of it.  I love the idea!  Think how many different and amazing stories you could get, and all with the same starting line.


While I haven’t actually read a copy of the magazine, I am soon to get one.  They have a program called ‘Read and Release,’ which I just jumped in on a few days ago.  It works like this: sometimes they get magazines sent back to them that are too beat up to try to resell, so they send these damaged copies along to people for free.  The only condition is that after you read it, you have to give it to someone else (‘release’ it) or drop it off at the doctor’s office, bus station, etc.  So I’m very excited to get my hands on a copy and see what fun stories it holds.


While waiting, I decided to try my hand at writing a story using one of their first lines.  The first line for the Spring 2011 issue will be “Sam was a loyal employee.”  I chewed on this line for about a day and a half before I actually sat down and wrote a complete story based off it last night.  The resulting story?


The Drone Chip‘ is a 1,509 word short story about a man, named Sam, with an enhanced worker chip.  It’s a soft science fiction, futuristic story that really has little purpose.  It’s main element is a touch of humor.  It’s kind of an odd piece for me as usually my characters are very emotional and my stories generally come out tragic and heavy.  This one has an entirely different feel – at least I think so.  To me it feels quirky, light hearted, and…really just flat out strange.  I’ve already edited and submitted it to The First Line, but honestly am not expecting to be accepted.  It was a fun adventure, if only just to get the writing itch satisfied.


Luckily The First Line has about three more first lines for 2011, so I should be all set to write more strange stories that have no purpose. 😉


Happy 3rd of December!



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