How To Write An Explosive Introduction That Will Make Readers Keep Reading
The lilacs bloomed in February that year. Their sweet scent floated through the thin, chilled air. The delicate blossoms were beautiful against the bleak, gray sky. All the old-timers called it a once-in-a-lifetime sight. A marvelous glory of God, worthy of celebration and praise.
Those bushes made my bones ache. A sick knowing something somewhere wasn’t as it should be. Sweet smelling, pastel blooms signaled danger, but I couldn’t say what or why.
In another life, I might have enjoyed those tiny flowers. I might have, but that wasn’t the life I was living.
The simple, sing-song pace of life I came here to build would be no more. My body knew it. My ancestors knew it. Every branch on every tree knew it, too as I watched in secret as their early spring buds withered to die. I held my tongue until my lungs burned with the warning bubbling up from my core.
Still, I held it some more. I could not risk being accused of conjure. I was no conjure woman, but they would not see it that way now in the 18th century. I would surely burn in this life, too from just one slip of my twice severed tongue.
Where is this story going?
I’d tell you, except I don’t know. For the last two weeks, I’ve taken a knee. I let go of some draining copywriting gigs and instead focused on resting my brain. Part of brain resting has included consuming mountains of TV and audiobooks.
It's a cardinal sin in our hustle culture world, but it works for me.
Many gurus will tell you to practice writing headlines, plots, characters, taglines, and everything in between.
I’ve never heard one say to practice writing introductions. And where I come from in Appalachia, we’d say that’s like putting the cart in front of the horse — you’re unlikely to get far.
During this break, I have written an introduction daily (with pen and paper, by the way). I don’t bother to think about where the story is going or what the angle of a blog post will be. It’s not important. What is important is practicing the elements of an…