Tuesday, July 13, 2010

4 #45 Tara

I was born Rufus William Gunther Chase, but people who know me call me Spoon. I was named for two grandfathers and one grandmother. Lucky for me, between my two grandmothers, my parents chose Grandma Gunther, or my name would have been Rufus William Mary Elizabeth Chase.

I earned the nickname Spoon in an ordinary way thanks to my older sister Natalie, who by the age four had gotten used to tea parties for three and giving her dolls French names like Yvette and Pierre (formerly known as Raggedy Ann and Andy). After our parents brought me home, Natalie was scrambling for a fourth place setting at the children's dining table.


  1. Hi Tara!
    I really like the first sentence because of the contrast between the long, formal name and the quirky, short nickname! The next two sentences however, really bogged me down with unnecessary explanation- I would cut both of these to get right to the story behind "Spoon".
    In the next paragraph I would tighten and simplify:
    Cut [in an ordinary way] and [older- we know she's older because she had to set another place setting when the MC was born] and break this long sentence up into two.
    A boy being named Spoon for a tea party setting is a cute beginning-but I would try to get there faster, if you know what I mean?
    I enjoy the humorous, gentle voice of your MC. Good luck!

  2. This is a compelling first sentence, though I have heard that some editors dislike characters who introduce themselves in the first sentence. I agree with Maurissa about the information that bogs down the opening. Can you work this info in later instead of putting it all here? I would omit the 2nd and 3rd sentences or shuffle them off to later on. Is any of the info in these 2 sentences important to the plot or flavor of the story? I'm thinking a tad bit for flavor (which IS nice), but elsewhere would be less cumbersome for an opening. I do like the little sister renaming her Raggedy dolls! Cute.

  3. I think Marissa is spot on when suggesting to omit the Grandparent information and go straight to the nickname. Love the quirky voice and I'd definitely read on :)

  4. Thank you all for taking the time to comment on my opening lines! I really appreciate the feedback. Having consensus about what's not working is very helpful.


Tell us what you think. We'd love to hear from you! :)