This is hard to believe. They make a buying decision after the first page? I just tried reading the novel I'm trying to sell and lost patience with myself on the 40th page, but I might've been tricked by the first page.
I don't have any perspective on my own writing but I've made up my mind about other people's by the time I've read the first few paragraphs. Every now and then I like something on page one and don't like something on page forty. I don't believe I'm wrong about putting a book down after reading the first page. One day I decided I was too old to read mediocre crap. I don't regret it.
Huh. I just remembered Richelle Mead got me with a first sentence once. I've never forgiven her for not living up the promise of her first sentence.
I once went to a conference where an honorary guest author went on and on and on and on about how a story shouldn't start with a character waking up. She was a little kooky. Right but kooky.
I'm not convinced he is able to articulate what it is about Gabriel Marquez's first line is so wonderful. Sometimes I think it's fair to say we don't know why something is wonderful.
Or, maybe I'm dubious because I heard curiosity wasn't a good hook. I don't know. Curiosity works for me. I've been told it doesn't work for others. It's impossible to know isn't it?