#5OnFri: Five Reasons to Look Forward to my First Five Pages Workshop

by Bess Cozby
published in Community

There’s a lot of fives in today’s article! That’s okay. I like the number five. My mom was born on 5/15/55, and I’m one of five kids. And none of that really has anything to do with this article except to say—five’s a good number. And here’s five reasons you’ll love my workshop on the first five pages of your manuscript.

#1) Your First Five Pages Are Hella Important

I’m the Web Editor for DIY MFA, and a writer, but I’m acquire fiction at Tor books. So I read a LOT of submissions. And as much as it frustrates me as a writer to say it—if I’m not sold on the first five pages, I’m not reading the rest of the book. And I think that’s true across the industry. It’s not because editors and agents don’t love writers and want to read whole books. It’s because they’re just isn’t time.

#2) There are Concrete Ways to Make Better

The good news is—the first five pages have a pretty set structure and in them, a writer needs to make certain promises to the reader. In this workshop, we’ll go over these five promises, giving you a chance to revisit your first five pages and make sure all these elements are there.

#3) Fun Examples

Throughout the workshop, we’ll be looking at openings that worked, openings to avoid, and why they work or don’t. We’ll have broad-ranging examples from YA to horror to women’s fiction, and everything in-between.

#4) First Line Workshop

If your first five pages are important, your first line is critical. After examining what the first five pages should include, we’ll narrow it down even further, going over what your first line should entail. You’ll have a chance to workshop yours with the class.

#5) Prizes!

What? Yes. Throughout the class, we’ll be trying to guess what genre some great first lines come from. There’ll be five chances to win, and each winner will receive a first page critique from yours truly.

So there you have it! Five reasons to be stoked about the First Five Pages workshop at Writer Igniter Con. Spots are going fast, so sign up now!

IMG_4628Bess Cozby writes epic stories in expansive worlds from her tiny apartment in New York City. By day, she’s an Editor at Tor Books, and Web Editor for DIY MFA. Her work is represented by Brooks Sherman of the Bent Agency. Tweet her at @besscozby, contact her at bess@diymfa.com, or visit her website at www.besscozby.com.


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