Opening Lines

Blog for london literary tours, opening Lines to stories, poems, novels, tours about writers in London, Graham Greene, Eveylyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf, Rose Macaulay, Wilfred Owen, Noel Coward.

I ought to come up with a killer opening line. This being our first blog. Yes, after all the research and planning, not to mention building our website, London Literary Tours has gone live and we’re taking bookings. Hurrah! Gulp.

So, on this maiden voyage into the uncharted seas of the blogosphere, I’m looking for a starter that’s sensational, sure to grab you, dear reader, and hook you in. Searching the old brain… Feeling the pressure…. Think! ‘It is a truth universally acknowledged…’, ‘If music be the food of love…’, ‘To begin at the beginning…’, ‘Once upon a time…’ Drat! All the good ones have been taken!

Perhaps I should begin, as London Literary Tours began, with this line:

‘Wouldn’t it be fun to –?’

There we were, sitting in the garden, Cindy had her own successful tour business, I was twitching to do something new, tired of a job that was – well, just no fun anymore.

We can’t remember which of us said it first. We like to think we said it together. But if what followed was a script, it would look something like this:

A: Wouldn’t it be fun to – you know, make a tour? A literary tour.
B: Yes!
A: Together.
B: We both love wandering the streets of the city, seeking out places we’ve read about.
A: We love history and books and poems and plays.
B: And we’d get to read a lot, and research, and write and meet people and talk to them.
A: And we’d give readings and recitals and act out scenes.
B: It would be like a cross between a regular walking tour, a site-specific performance —
A: And street theatre.
B: Fab.
A: What do you think?
B: You had me on ‘fun’. Certainly by ‘together’.

Having worked in a corporate environment where deadening words – efficiency, goals, targets, strategy – are currency, pursuing something for fun, following one’s passions feels like a defiantly counter-cultural act. We are, after all, taking a leap into the unknown with no outcome in mind beyond wanting to do something beautiful, give our guests three hours of interesting pleasure, and make a little pocket money. But perhaps the pursuit of a bit of fun is the best reason to go on any adventure.

‘Wouldn’t it be fun to –?’ Yes, that’s a great opening line. A bit ‘Famous Five’, perhaps, but great. And this is just the start.

If you’d like to share in the fun, please check out our first tour, the St James’s Jaunt.

Posted by: Mike

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