It was a dark and stormy night contest

Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest

it was a dark and stormy night contest

Bookish Ramblings: It Was a Dark and Stormy Night: The Best(?) from the Bulwer-Lytton Contest

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American academic Sue Fondrie's disturbing description of thoughts like mutilated sparrows has been declared the worst sentence of the year. Fondrie, a professor at the University of Wisconsin, beat an impressive display of terrible writing to win the Bulwer-Lytton fiction contest, named in honour of Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton's novel Paul Clifford and its much-quoted opening, "It was a dark and stormy night". Entrants to the prize are duly challenged to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels. The academic's submission to the prize , "Cheryl's mind turned like the vanes of a wind-powered turbine, chopping her sparrow-like thoughts into bloody pieces that fell onto a growing pile of forgotten memories", makes her its 29th winner. Fondrie's sentence is the shortest winner in the prize's history, "proving that bad writing need not be prolix, or even very wordy", said organisers. Bulwer-Lytton's own sentence, "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", takes the opposite approach, running to 59 words. Fondrie later wrote on Twitter that despite her sentence's subject, she is "in no way anti-alternative energy".

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"It was either a dark or a stormy night, depending, of course, on if one was comparing globally or locally, as the midnight sun would be considered quite bright to.
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The first 'dark and stormy night' was conjured up by the English Victorian novelist, playwright and politician who rejoiced in the name of Sir Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton. It has become synonymous with the Victorian melodramatic style, of which Bulwer-Lytton's many works provide numerous examples. This style has long been out of fashion and considered kitsch and risible. Contestants are required "to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels". Bulwer-Lytton's own florid pre-contest attempt, in his novel Paul Clifford , , began:.



The meaning and origin of the expression: It was a dark and stormy night

But do you know the real author of that famous line, and why he has a literary competition named after him? Host: Gary Price.

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Dark and Stormy Night (Bulwer-Lytton Contest) Series

Entrants are invited "to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels" that is, deliberately bad. According to the official rules, the prize for winning the contest is "a pittance". The contest was started in by Professor Scott E. This opening, from the novel Paul Clifford , continues:. 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. The first year of the competition attracted just three entries, but it went public the next year, received media attention, and attracted 10, entries.

For many writers, winning an award will be the crowning moment of their career: much needed proof that all the sleepless nights, hours of hard-work and effort spent editing and re-editing the same sentence was worth it. But not all literary awards are as prestigious as these and, indeed, rather than celebrate beautiful works of fiction, some awards do the unthinkable and applaud bad writing. The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest is an annual tongue-in-cheek award that pokes fun at the more serious and weighty competitions, such as the Man Booker Prize. Started in by Professor Scott E. The Bulwer-Lytton Contest has proved to be immensely popular, with many writers eagerly taking up the challenge to flaunt their most flowery and clumsy fiction.

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The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (BLFC) is a tongue-in-cheek contest, held annually and 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.
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4 COMMENTS

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  2. Balduino V. says:

    Welcome to the Bulwer Lytton Fiction Contest! Son of "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night": More of the Best Bride of Dark and Stormy: Yet More of the Best(? ).

  3. Minkwoman says:

    Why is "It was a dark and stormy night.." not a good opening? - Writing Stack Exchange

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