Favorite First Lines.

More prime link bait for me: The Atlantic asked 21 writers to name their favorite opening lines. There are some obvious selections (“Stately, plump Buck Mulligan…”, “Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins.”) and some sneaky good picks (“I have never seen anything like it: two little discs of glass suspended in front of his eyes in loops of wire,” from J.M. Coetzee’s brilliant Waiting for the Barbarians, which has one of my favorite opening lines of all time).

And then there’s this little gem of a tweet from Margaret Atwood on the most famous opening line of them all: “‘Call me Ishmael.’ 3 words. Power-packed. Why Ishmael? It’s not his real name. Who’s he speaking to? Eh?”