“It was a dark and stormy night . . . “

To the delight of avid readers everywhere, the 2015 winners of the annual Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest have been announced.  The BLFC is named for English playwright Edward Bulwer-Lytton, and celebrates really, stupendously bad opening lines to novels and stories.  The headline to this article is from his work.

This year’s winning entry:

Seeing how the victim’s body, or what remained of it, was wedged between the grill of the Peterbilt 389 and the bumper of the 2008 Cadillac Escalade EXT, officer “Dirk” Dirksen wondered why reporters always used the phrase “sandwiched” to describe such a scene since there was nothing appetizing about it, but still, he thought, they might have a point because some of this would probably end up on the front of his shirt.

Joel Phillips, West Trenton, NJ

The runner-up:

We can’t let the dastards win,” said Piper Bogdonovich to her fellow gardener, Mr. Sidney Beckworth Hammerstein, as she clenched her gloved hands into gnarly, fuzzed fists, “because if I have to endure another year after which my Royal Puffin buttercups come in second place to Marsha Engelstrom’s Fainting Dove Tear Drop peonies, I will find a machine gun and leave my humanity card in the Volvo.”

Grey Harlowe, Salem, OR

There are many more entries at the link.  Giggle-worthy!



  1. This goes back 40+ years, but Mike McGrady of Newsday put together a group of writers to produce Naked Came the Stranger as a spoof on popular detective novels. Never read it, but I do remember an article describing it in which Grady said "they were told anything resembling good writing will be blue-penciled into oblivion."

    I'm glad to see the tradition continues.

  2. That was fantastic. Thanks for making me aware of it.

    I always enjoy the wide ranging variety of your blog, from the very, very serious, to the light-hearted. I'm glad I found your blog.

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