“For the first month of Ricardo and Felicity’s affair, they greeted one another at every stolen rendezvous with a kiss–a lengthy, ravenous kiss, Ricardo lapping and sucking at Felicity’s mouth as if she were a giant cage-mounted water bottle and he were the world’s thirstiest gerbil.” (by Molly Ringle)
Not quite what you were expecting from a contest winner? Well that’s because the Bulwer-Lytton contest celebrates the worst of fiction writing, by calling on entrants to pen the first sentence to the world’s worst novel.
“The wood nymph fairies blissfully pranced in the morning light past the glistening dewdrops on the meadow thistles by the Old Mill, ignorant of the daily slaughter that occurred just behind its lichen-encrusted walls, twin 20-ton mill stones savagely ripping apart the husks of wheat seed, gleefully smearing the starchy entrails across their dower granite faces in unspeakable botanical horror and carnage – but that’s not our story; ours is about fairies!” (by Rick Cheeseman)
The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction contest has been sponsored by the English Department at San Jose State University since 1982 and definitely makes for entertaining reading. You can read this year’s winners and dishonorable mentions, as well as the history of the contest on the Bulwer-Lytton website.
“Cynthia had washed her hands of Philip McIntyre – not like you wash your hands in a public restroom when everyone is watching you to see if you washed your hands but like washing your hands after you have been working in the garden and there is dirt under your fingernails — dirt like Philip McIntyre.” (by Linda Boatright)