Wednesday Words: 2011 Bulwer-Lytton Contest “Winners”

What’s not to love about a yearly “whimsical literary competition that challenges entrants to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels” ? The Bulwer-Lytton contest, named after the writer of the famous opening salvo “It was a dark and stormy night..” has named this year’s winner.

Cheryl’s mind turned like the vanes of a wind-powered turbine, chopping her sparrow-like thoughts into bloody pieces that fell onto a growing pile of forgotten memories.

Sue Fondrie

Oshkosh, WI

And, as always there are many gems in the ‘dishonorable’ mentions which are just as good, IMO. A couple of standouts include this runner up in the ‘romance’ category:

Deanna waited for him in a deliberate pose on the sailor-striped chaise lounge of the newly-remodeled Ramada, her bustier revealing the tops of her white breasts like eggs–eggs of the slightly undercooked, hard-boiled variety, showing a nascent jiggle with her apprehensive breath, eggs that were then peeled ever-so-carefully so as not to pierce the jellied, opaque albumen and unleash the longing, viscous yolk within–yes, she lay there, oblong and waiting to be deviled.

Meredith K. Gray

Ithaca, NY

And these in the ‘miscellaneous dishonorable mention’ category:

As the young officer studied the oak door, he was reminded of his girlfriend — for she was also slightly unhinged, occasionally sticky, and responded well to being stripped and given a light oiling.

Ian Fishlock

Harrow, London


Day broke upon the Baroness von Hestach with the pitiable insistence of all that she despised–a gray and unattractive intrusion into her sumptuous bedchamber, much like the Baron.

Holly Kohler

Concord, MA

Anyone have a favorite to share?



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