Monday, December 8, 2014

2nd Annual First Line Christmas Contest!!!

(source)

It's back! I had so much fun w/this last year, that I've decided to make it an annual thing. I've always loved reading first lines and I love doing giveaways, so the two combined have become the First Line Christmas Contest. A list of Christmas/holiday/seasonal words is provided and you pick one(or more, if you wish) to put in the first line of a story. Leave your first line in the comments, and two winners will be picked to receive an ecopy of My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories, through either Amazon or B&N.

  
And this year I will not be a judge. It was so hard to pick a winner last year when there were so many good first lines. Plus, you guys are my friends, which makes it tougher. So I am pleased to announce that Jessica Lawson and Kathryn Purdie will be our guest judges this year!




Jessica Lawson enjoys living/playing in the mountains of Colorado with her husband and children. She has to seasonally inform the landlord about bear damage to the trash bin at the end of her driveway and regularly sees a fox family trotting around the neighborhood (which makes her feel like she’s in one of her favorite Roald Dahl books). Her first book, The Actual & Truthful Adventures of Becky Thatcher, came out in July 2014. Her second book, Nooks & Crannies(also with Simon & Schuster), will hit bookstores in June 2015.



 




Kathryn Purdie is the author of Auraseer, the first in a young adult fantasy trilogy releasing in winter 2016 from Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins. Kathryn’s love of storytelling began as a young girl when her dad told her about Boo Radley while they listened to the film score of To Kill a Mockingbird. Her own attempts at storytelling usually involved writing plays to perform with neighborhood kids or making home video productions featuring her younger sister as a nerd. In high school and college, Kathryn focused on acting, composing sappy poetry, singing folk ballads on her guitar, and completing at least ten pages in her journal every night. Years later, when she was in recovery from donating a kidney to her brother, inspiration for her first novel struck. She’s been writing darkly fantastical stories ever since. Kathryn is represented by Josh Adams of Adams Literary.

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{To read more about Jessica & Kathryn's books, please click on their book titles. Thanks!}

Now, on to the list of words!

gingerbread
snowman
ornaments
chocolate covered cherries
Santa
bow
holly jolly
angel
ice skates
Christmas tree
dreidel
frost
advent calendar
tinsel
manger scene
poinsettia
menorah
reindeer
penguin
roasted chestnuts
presents
kinara
stocking
candy cane
eggnog
Jack Frost
star
caroling
sleigh
icicle
nutcracker
mittens
snowflake
cheer
hot chocolate
garland
 
{Also, any of these words can be made singular or plural.}

The first lines can be for any genre: Adult, MG, YA, Picture book, Poetry, etc. The only thing I ask is for it to be clean, of course. The winners will be announced via a new post on 12/15. So have fun, everyone, and I'm looking forward to reading all your crafty, creative, and festive first lines!

Contest is now closed, as the judges are deliberating on their picks. Thanks, everyone!

(source)

58 comments:

  1. It was always Mom's job to light the menorah and I definitely lack her steady hand: one candle sits slanted, flickering merrily, and another just dropped to the ground, dangerously close to Dad's Christmas tree.

    FUN! I loved this last year :) can't wait to read all the festive first lines!!

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    1. You started us off great, Beth! You've totally got me intrigued w/just this one sentence by how you reference Mom & Dad w/the different holiday traditions. Could there be a bit of tension here...? =) I'm glad you like the contest, I really enjoy doing it!

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  2. What a fun idea. I'll play ... since I'm working on a Christmas story. Here is my first sentence:

    Two days before Christmas, the household was a riot with aunties, uncles and cousins from all over, but my littlest cousin Paul sat quietly hunched in front of the hamster cage. "Where's Robot?"

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    1. I love the name Robot for a hamster! =)

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    2. Ummm ... I forgot your list. Here's a revision.

      Two days before Christmas, the household was a riot with aunties, uncles and cousins from all over, but my littlest cousin Paul sat quietly, sipping eggnog, in front of the hamster cage. "Where's Robot?"

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    3. I hadn't even noticed there wasn't a word from the list on there! I fail at my own contest. ;)

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  3. Oh, what fun! Here's mine:

    Call me crazy, but I was pretty sure eggnog wasn't supposed to have floaties, and from the way Uncle Lou lay passed out on the couch, brown cocoa drool escaping one corner of his mouth, I decided it might be best to steer clear of the beverage table tonight.

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    1. Lol! I don't approach eggnog as a general rule, but certainly not with floaties!

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  4. This is a fun idea! I'll play along!

    When I was 13 years old, I got a trip to the ER and a lifelong fear of reindeer lawn ornaments for Christmas, and I have my cousin Brandon and his "magical" eggnog additive to thank for it.

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    1. Reindeer ornaments are some of my favs- but probably wouldn't be anymore if I went to the hospital. =)

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  5. I'll bite! I've been looking forward to that collection. Sure wish we had more than one sentence, though. I want to keep writing!

    I hit the barn feet first; the impact shook the rotting wood, catapulting an icicle point-first toward my face.

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    1. Ooh! Am I sensing the start of an action-packed novel here? Also, I would not want to take an icicle in the face, heh!

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  6. I so want to read this book. Two words: Holly Black!

    Here's mine:

    Declan stumbled into his dorm room -- drunk off half a bottle of gingerbread-flavored vodka -- and tripped over the lifeless body of his roommate, a freshman biology major whose given name was Jack Frost.

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    1. I knew you'd be a fan. ;) And gingerbread-flavored vodka- bravo, very creative! Or is that actually a thing...?

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    2. I want to say it's really a vodka flavor. But I don't know.

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    3. There is! It was bugging me so I had to go Google it. =)

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  7. What a fun contest! Here's my first sentence:

    I slammed down the phone--if the rumors were true, a certain Mr. Jack Frost was going to get eggnog thrown in his face tonight, instead of the chance to slip off my...mittens.

    Is that "clean" enough? If not, just go ahead and delete it. :)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Nope, what's Christmas without a little naughty, too? =) It made me chuckle!

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  8. I don't have a line for you, but the one about Mr. Jack Frost above almost made me spit out my coffee. What fun! And naughty, naughty Jack!

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    1. Wasn't it funny? It makes me think of the Jack Frost from The Scanta Clause 3 movie, heh.

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  9. Oh my goodness, so many awesome lines! And Jack Frost--lol! Too funny :) Great contest, Leandra--if I get a second I'll try to and throw something later and edit my post!

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  10. How fun! I have to think about this one and come back.
    (The Jack Frost one did get a chuckle from me. I'm glad I wasn't drinking at the time.)

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    1. Right? Ruined computers are no joke. *grin*

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  11. Great idea Leandra! I'll play along :-)

    It’s my first year sitting at the adult table, and there’s no way I’m letting the drunk Santa—who keeps asking my aunt if she wants to peek in his stocking—get the last spoon.

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    1. I always thought Santa was a little creepy in that red suit. ;)

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  12. This is so much fun! I'm laughing at the first lines already. I'm going to try a holiday romance!

    My first line: I earned a place high on Santa's naughty list when I licked Nathan's candy cane slow and deliberate, causing an explosion of holly jolly cheer all over his penguin suit.

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  13. What a fun idea. Okay, since I'm usually in PB mode, I'll try one:

    On Christmas eve the gingerbread ornaments mutinied and hijacked the sleigh, but this year the angel was ready.

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    1. Aw, I like it! And aren't gingerbread men always causing problems. ;)

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  14. Either I had too much eggnog or I shouldn't have licked the pointsettia, or maybe our menorah was lopsided, but I know for certain I never should've put ice skates on before I tried to get the reindeer out of the kitchen.

    @glowolf143
    This is so much fun!

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    1. Glad you're enjoying yourself, thanks for joining in. =) And never, ever, would I recommend licking a poinsettia, lol!

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  15. This is fun.

    She picked up the cup of eggnog, with no notion that it was laced with poison.

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    1. Eep! I am not a fan of eggnog. Deadly stuff. ;)

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  16. It's not every day you see Santa holding a bloody icicle.

    Fun contest!

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  17. Some of these are so great! I wish I could favorite the comments! Love the Santa with the bloody icicle! And the gingerbread mutiny!

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    1. I've seen some blogs that do have that feature, it's pretty neat! I don't think I've ever seen it in Blogger tho. =/

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  18. Oh man, I'm laughing like crazy over some of these first lines! Don't think I could beat any of them, so I'll wish everyone good luck with the contest and say that ALL of these should be written into full stories! :D

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    1. Thanks, Erin! I love how creative and fun they all are. The judges are going to have a tough time...

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  19. Ok this is too fun! Here's mine:

    I half expected his kiss to be cold, his touch to be cool and frigid; instead Jack Frost tasted like warm gingerbread and melted cocoa, his touch like every exciting possibility beneath a mistletoe.

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    1. Ooh! I love 'his touch like every exciting possibility beneath a mistletoe'. Jack Frost has been everything to a rascal, to now a charmer, so far!

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  20. This sounds like fun. I'm game. Here's mine:

    Totally fed-up with Jack Frost's stupid holly-jolly Christmas presents -- not another pair of purple mittens with green reindeer -- I stuffed chocolate-covered cherries into my mouth as fast as I could, all the while wishing I could tie a red bow around around his conceited face, plop him and his over-rated abs into a sleigh and haul him to the dump.

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    1. This. I can stuff chocolate covered cherries like nobody's business. Seriously, a box is not safe for more than a couple of hours within my reach. =)

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  21. Apparently the Nutcracker is not just a ballet, he thought as his now ex-girlfriend stormed away.

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    1. Or maybe it should be "Apparently the Nutcracker is not just a ballet, Jack Frost thought as his now ex-girlfriend stormed away."

      That Jack Frost seems to be one naughty guy...

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    2. Yeah, he's really getting into all kinds of trouble this year! Last year it was elves(which you'll notice is missing from the list) ;) Bad actions have consequences, lol!

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  22. I wouldn't want to do the picking either! So many good ones. Wise lady to call in support!

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  23. I remember this from last year - it was so much fun! My brain is buried in my new WIP, though, and I have no brain-power left. :P

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  24. Jack Frost was having a huge problem in the form of a hot flash.

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  25. Oh my gosh I love this! I'm so glad I made it back in time to play!! Here's mine...

    With shaking hands I pull the shawl closer around my face, lighting the last candle on the menorah and praying it's enough to conceal my identity.

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    1. And now I want to know WHY she's hiding! =)

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