For the uninitiated, the Bulwer-Lytton contest is named after Edward George Bulwer-Lytton, author of that infamous novel:
“It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents–except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness.”
You can find more information on the history of the contest here. The short version is that the contest is about writing the worst opening sentence – of up to 50 or so words – possible.
Agent 53986262.9 was strapped precariously to a giant Chinese firework, the fuse slowly shortening like a noodle getting slurped into someone’s pursed lips, and although he knew he was running out of time and still had no plan for escape, all he could think of was the song about the Muffin Man and how the word “polyurethane” made it sound like the material was made out of multiple urethras.
Great Falls, VA
But please, go and read the rest! They have winners in many categories, including children’s fiction, fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, romance, purple prose, and vile puns:
I was in a back alley in Fiji, fighting desperately and silently for my life, fighting desperately for oxygen, clawing at the calm and almost gentle pressure of the fabric held over my face by implacable, ebony thighs when I realized — he was killing me softly with his sarong.
So go! Enjoy! 😀