meme/poll

50 first sentences

This is floating around everywhere, and appeals to my weakness for self-contemplation. In reverse order:

25. When John was young, before his mother died, the grey dawn was their time together—the hours before morning. [sga; john pov]

24. Wendecker was an idiot. [sga au; rodney]

23. When the balloon animal first appears on Rodney’s desk-counter-table-thing, he thinks nothing of it. [sga; rodney]

22. John, at age nine, spends long summer hours lying on his back in the shade-dappled yard. [sga; john]

21. When Teyla meditates by herself in the privacy of her room (a privacy which she will never take for granted), she sings. [sga; teyla]

20. The crust is the hard part: finding the right balance of ingredients so it will roll out without sticking to everything or pulling to pieces, getting the dough thin enough to cover the pan. [sga; john]

19. Ronon grows up in a city surrounded by fields and forests, the closest body of water a single river wending its slow way through the countryside. [sga; ronon]

18. When John's four, his uncle shows him how to make a paper airplane. [sga; john]

17. To make a rose— [original; none]

16. John first wishes for wings when he is eight, five hours into the twelve hour car trip to his grandparent's farm; his uncle's funeral is in two days, and the car is full of a brittle silence instead of his parents' usual banter. [sga au; john]

15. There are no mirrors in the palace of the Ilm of Itibar, save the one; no furniture or windows or walls. [itibar of ilm; ilm of itibar]

14. “Promise me you won’t go crazy when I die.” [sga; rodney]

13. Really, no one could blame him for losing his head a little. [sga; rodney]

12. Sam can hold her own in a fight, can take down men a head taller than herself and half-again her weight. [sga; sam]

11. "A sister! you are she," Olivia had said, when truth had come to light and Cesario changed to Viola, and had meant it with all her heart. [twelfth night; olivia]

10. Rodney opens the door just enough to glare through and snarls, “What do you want?” [sga au; rodney]

9. The first time he walks through the gate after Sha’re is taken, the first time he does it knowing what’s on the other side, does it with his eyes open and fearhopesorrowbitterangerlove in his heart (there is no word in any language for what he feels), he doesn’t look back. [sg-1; daniel, et al.]

8. Four steps into Atlantis (alien city, alien world, he reminds himself, and then wishes he hadn’t, because they’re not the only things that are alien), the lights come on—the city comes on, and suddenly he’s not alone in his head anymore. [sga au; john]

7. He really has no desire to do this, and he really should have known better than let himself get into this position in the first place, but the girl (old enough to be a woman, sure doesn’t act like it) just won’t take no for an answer. [sga; john]

6. When Rodney has a bad day, he takes it out on the world at large—stomps and glowers, snaps at people when they offer sympathy, huffs when they don’t. [sga au; rodney]

5. Apparently Sateda had combined sales and income tax, with different kinds of items taxed at different rates--but that was somehow also influenced by the type of job and the total income of the taxee. [sga; john]

4. Flying is flying is flying. [peter pan; peter]

3. They have to put together a cover story, since telling everyone that Michael’s an ex-wraith would be a good way to get him lynched. [sga au; michael]

2. “A frozen yogurt machine, huh?” [sga; lorne]

1. There are some things that shouldn’t happen, some realities that ought not exist. [sg-1; sam]


Obviously SGA is my true love, with John winning out over Rodney as the favorite pov and present tense trouncing the pants off the other tenses. Broadly speaking, the opening sentences split into two categories: "when" sentences, which usually aren't set in any particular time, and "start in the middle" sentences, which don't really explain anything at all. Lengths, first words, sentences structures, etc., seem pretty varied. Of course, these are all attached to completed stories. If we consider all of the stuff I've started, we come out with a rather different set, because I'm bad at finishing things.

Again, in reverse order:

25. "I wouldn't do that, if I were you," the fox told her. [original; unnamed; fragment]

24. John started sleeping with Teyla after the city-wide lockdown. [sga au; teyla; fragment]

23. It was spring in Atlantis, spring hovering on the brink of summer, but on Earth it would be bitter November, and John couldn't shake the chill out of his bones. [sga au; john; fragment]

22. When John is young, before he goes to school, or is old enough to realize that most people sleep through the whole night and don’t get up at four in the morning to eat toast, his mother tells him stories in the dark. [sga au; john; wip]

21. Rodney was brushing his teeth when it happened, making faces at himself in the bathroom mirror because it wasn’t like there was anyone there to mock him for doing it—not any more. [sga au; rodney; wip]

20. Apparently Sateda had combined sales and income tax, with different kinds of items taxed at different rates--but that was somehow also influenced by the type of job and the total income of the taxee. [sga; john; snapshot]

19. When he was eleven, Rodney read The Brothers Karamozv. [sga au; rodney; fragment]

18. Lily meets them at the door when they get back after school, eyes slightly puffy, as if she’s been crying. [sga au; john; fragment]

17. In the end, it’s not enough, which seems to be the story of John’s life, particularly here. [sga au; john; fragment]

16. It ends like this: John is on his knees in the middle of the gate room, swaying slightly because he’s got a big hole in him and is about to lie down on the floor and die. [sga; john; wip]

15. This is the end, Aiden thinks as they fall into the ocean (as he is eaten, as he hovers on the edge of having his life drained away)— [sga au; ford; fragment]

14. “This is a story that must be told backwards,” John’s mother says to him. [sga au; john; fragment]

13. “But that can’t be the end,” John protests. [sga au; john; fragment]

12. Flying is flying is flying. [peter pan; peter; complete]

11. They have to put together a cover story, since telling everyone that Michael’s an ex-wraith would be a good way to get him lynched. [sga au; michael; semi-complete]

10. “They’re purple." [sga; rodney?; fragment]

9. The universe hiccupped quietly as Teyla stepped through the gate, elbow brushing against John’s, and she put her foot down on hard pavement, not grass. [sga/tw; teyla; wip]

8. “A frozen yogurt machine, huh?” [sga; lorne; complete]

7. There are some things that shouldn’t happen, some realities that ought not exist. [sg-1; sam; complete]

6. "Oi, Jensen--we've got wards over here!" [corbel & squinch; jensen; fragment]

5. They say that you can tell a wraith by the way its eyes look through you, by the sharpness of its teeth and the lack of appetite for anything but beer. [sga; teyla?; fragment]

4. The scars itch, always, regular as breathing, but she isn’t ever able to become inured to it. [original; unnamed; fragment]

3. In those days there were still beasts on the heights. [original; no one; fragment]

2. The world they step into reminds John of Africa, although the skin-tone scale is tilted more toward olive. [sga; john; wip]

1. The hardest thing about breaking a ward, Jensen has found, is that single moment after all the back-breaking preparation is done when he’s actually tapped into the spell and there’s magic trying to run through him two ways at once. [corbel & squinch; jensen; fragment]


Still lots of SGA things, most of which are seen through John's eyes. Of course, this selection is skewed a bit by the presence of the series of failed stories for the sga_genficathon. There's more stuff set in the past tense than in the previous set, more dialog, more action. Dunno why. Earliest story in the first set is from October, almost a year ago; second set goes back only as far as January. Might be something going on there. If I had more energy I'd look to see if there's a discernible shift in my writing style over time, although it's probably too short a period to see anything definite.




5. It’s Daniel at the door, and Sheppard, and they’re not supposed to be here until Sunday, which is why Jack’s wearing sweats and a holey t-shirt (gray, Air Force, washed so many times it feels like a second skin when he pulls it on).

4. Three seats over there's a child (9? 10? younger than Cassie was when they found her; less well behaved, at any rate) banging his foot against the chair leg, whining loudly about being bored.

3. The city runs past me like water, like sap--alive, moving, full of strangers walking close as brothers.

2. Some days he feels like he's behind enemy lines, all alone, without even the possibility of backup.

1. The thing about unicorns that most city-dwellers don't realize is that they're not white, they're not sweet or delicate or pretty, and they smell.