Sandbox 11

Opening And Closing Lines

“It was a dark and stormy night.”

“But they never learned what it was that Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who, and Mrs, Which had to do, for there was a gust of wind, and they were gone.”

A Wrinkle In Time by Madeline L’Engle

“That fool of a fairy Lucinda did not intend to lay a curse on me.”

“And so, with laughter and love, we lived happily ever after.”

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

“I was born singing. Most babies cry. I sang an aria.”

“And so, with song and love, Ijori and I, our family, and our beloved kingdom lived happily ever after.”

Fairest by Gail Carson Levine

“Now, what I want is, Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but the Facts.”

“Let them be! We shall sit with lighter bosoms on the hearth, to see the ashes of our fires turn gray and cold.”

Hard Times by Charles Dickens

“During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens, I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher.”

“While I gazed, this fissure rapidly widened—there came a fierce breath of the whirlwind—the entire orb of the satellite burst at once upon my sight—my brain reeled as I saw the mighty walls rushing asunder—there was a long tumultuous shouting sound like the voice of a thousand waters—and the deep and dank tarn at my feet closed sullenly and silently over the fragments of the “House of Usher.”

The Fall of The House Of Usher by Edgar Allen Poe

“Scarlett O’Hara was not beautiful, but men seldom realized it when caught by her charm as the Tarleton twins were.”

“I’ll think of it all tomorrow, at Tara. I can stand it then. Tomorrow I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day.”

Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

“Marley was dead: to begin with.”

“And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God Bless Us, Every One!”

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

“O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention, a kingdom for a stage, princes to act, and monarchs to behold the swelling scene!”

“Henry the Sixth, in infant bands crown’d king of France and England, did this king succeed; Whose state so many had the managing that they lost France and made his England bleed; which oft our stage hath shown; and, for their sake, in your fair minds let this acceptance take.”

Henry V by William Shakespeare

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree or comparison only.”

“It is a far, far better thing that I do, that I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to, that I have ever known.”

-A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

“There are so many other things Jesus did. If they were all written down, each of them, one by one, I can’t imagine a world big enough to hold such a library of books.”

The Gospel Of John by John

Before I started this assignment I made a checklist of things I’d like to look for while editing my book. Through my literary study of books like Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, The Rocking Horse Winner by D. H. Lawrence, and The Most Dangerous Game by Richard Connell, I had a distinct impression of each story starting with the main problem, and ending with it as well. Some of them end with it solved others end with it unsolved. In my editing checklist I put down to make sure I did the same. This assignment was really interesting and helpful on that exact same note.

My favorite of these opening and closing lines is really a tie between The Gospel of John and A Tale of Two Cities. Dickens actually follows the style of Ecclesiastes in his opening line and the closing line is so full of peace and beauty. He begins with the struggle of the story, and ends with the main character at peace from his struggle.

John is probably my favorite Biblical author. His literary genius is stunning. Not only does he repeatedly quote from the Old Testimate in his writings, but he also opens and closes his book with the same thing: The Word. His writing is The Word from beginning to end.


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