Would You Turn This Bestselling Author’s First Page?

by Rachel Baker on February 20, 2015

I ran across this article yesterday. I don’t normally post things like this, but I couldn’t resist. Click through and read the excerpt, decide whether you’d have turned the page and kept reading.

I wouldn’t have; and I probably still won’t read the book. The reason I posted this article is because I think the thought experiment is an interesting when it comes to figuring out which book to read and review and which to pass on. When I first started Old Musty Books, I would read just about anything; because I needed content. Now, a book must have a pretty stellar first page for me to be willing to read the first chapter.

Here’s the Article: Flog a Pro: would you turn this bestselling author’s first page?

Trained by reading hundreds of submissions, editors and agents often make their read/not-read decision on the first page. In a customarily formatted book manuscript with chapters starting about 1/3 of the way down the page (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type), there are 16 or 17 lines on the first page.

The challenge: does this narrative compel you to turn the page?

Please judge by storytelling quality, not by genre—some reject an opening page immediately because of genre, but that’s not a good enough reason when the point is to analyze for storytelling strength.

This article was written by: Rachel Baker – Click to follow on Twitter; or you can follow her at The Crafty Veteran on Bloglovin

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