When I wrote my first draft, my first chapter was fantastic in my eyes. After learning more it was more backstory than anything else. This is not a bad thing in fact it was great for me as the writer. It helped me envision the scene more clearly and get to know my characters better-- especially my protagonist. My CPs have helped in this department along with some open critiques. I also bought a book --Hooked by Les Edgerton. I have only read a little of it and so far it is great. Most of the questions I have I am sure will be answered by this cute little blue book but I want to know from you.
The photo is not the best but there is a goldfish on it with a hook at the top --get it:) Anyway, I am on my fifth revision of my first chapter. I keep going back to it. I think because I am stuck on my second chapter which is becoming trouble. Right now chapter 2 is a problem--not because of the content but there is so much to be done. So I keep going back to chapter 1.
I have been reading first chapters of books that I have read. This has made me confused. Some books in my eyes still seem to have a lot of backstory but seem successful. Now I am not saying that my first draft would have been fine --no way it is really bad-- but what does the public like? I know what I like. The advice I have been given is to get to the action ASAP but some of these successful novels don't seem to do this --at least not to me.
Another thing I question --Is there a rule on how long your first chapter should be? I am guessing not. I have read some that are thirty pages and some that are one. Would an editor or agent toss out a manuscript for length of the first chapter?
What do you like in your first chapter as a writer/reader?
How long do you feel a first chapter should be?
Any advice from your experience in writing a great first chapter?
Many questions I know but since I am constantly looking at this chapter it is what's on my mind. My normal lack of sleep doesn't help either.
Since I spoke of beginnings, get over to Kelly's (Kelly's Compositions) and sign up for the First Page Blogfest takes place on April 2nd.
Happy writing and revising!