Your First Page: First Pages and What They Tell Us about the Pages That Follow Them: Revised Workshop and Classroom Edition


Product Details

Broadview Press Inc
Publish Date
5.9 X 8.9 X 0.7 inches | 1.0 pounds
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About the Author

Peter Selgin is the author of Drowning Lessons, winner of the 2007 Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction. He has published a novel, an essay collection, a memoir, three books on the writer's craft, and several children's books. His play, A God in the House, was a Eugene O'Neill National Playwrights Conference finalist. He is a visual artist as well as a writer, and his illustrations have appeared in The New Yorker, Forbes, and elsewhere. He is Associate Professor of English (Creative Writing), Georgia College & State University.


Praise for the first edition

"I have long taught the critical importance of the first few pages of any work of fiction. What a delight to find a smart, perceptive, enormously useful book that focuses on the craft and technique issues of these same make-or-break first 500 words. I heartily recommend Peter Selgin's Your First Page to any aspiring young writer." -- Robert Olen Butler, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of From Where You Dream: The Process of Writing Fiction

"Like a detective dusting for fingerprints, in Your First Page Peter Selgin demonstrates how a close examination of the opening paragraphs of a story, novel, or essay can reveal much more than a beginning writer might imagine: the entire work's DNA. In example after example, he demonstrates the kind of close reading that will serve any writer well and offers sound advice on exposition, scene, characterization, point of view, style, and many more essential components of effective prose. Though it can serve the individual writer toiling away at home, I look forward to sharing it with students in my classes, too." -- Peter Turchi, author of A Muse and A Maze: Writing as Puzzle, Mystery, and Magic

"An excellent, unique book. I use this book in my English 307: Writing the Literary Novel course. What's special about it is its rich collection of good quality brief samples of work in progress. The strengths and weaknesses of these texts are clearly analyzed by Peter Selgin with an intelligent eye, and students can see how to improve their own work. Reading the contemporary masters of fiction is valuable, but inevitably a chasm is created. This book helps to realistically bridge that chasm and get students on the road to increasingly more efficient results in their own writing." -- Vic Cavalli, Trinity Western University