Join us every Tuesday for our weekly Slice of Life Story Challenge!
Leads have always been tricky for me. I’ve been thinking about the ways I can strengthen my writing — from the start — lately. I know there’s no single way to open a piece of writing so I’m constantly studying leads I admire.
Whenever I begin a book by an author who is new to me, I approach it with a bit of apprehension. I wonder if I’ll like the writing style. If the story doesn’t draw me in quickly (Of if doesn’t use quotation marks to mark dialogue, which I’ve encountered three times in the past few months!), then I abandon the book and move on.
A couple of weeks ago, I read Finlay Donovan Is Killing It. The lead drew me in immediately. From the moment I read it, I knew I was going to see the book through until the end. Here’s a peek at it:
I aspire to write leads that draw others in as well as Elle Casimano did in Finlay Donovan Is Killing It. I’ll try today — and every day during the month of March — to invite readers into my world in a way that makes them want to keep reading. As writers, that’s all we can do, right? We keep trying to get stronger with our craft.
I am a literacy consultant who has spent the past dozen years working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grades K-6, I'm a former fourth and fifth-grade teacher so I have a passion for working with upper elementary students.
I'm the author of Craft Moves (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016) and the co-author of Jump Into Writing (Zaner-Bloser, 2021), Welcome to Writing Workshop (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), and Day By Day (Stenhouse, 2010).