A selection of my favourite opening lines from the short stories of Raymond Carver.
We’d finished supper and I’d been at the kitchen table with the lights out for the last hour, watching. If he was going to do it tonight, it was time, past time. I hadn’t seen him in three nights. But tonight the bedroom shade was up over there and the light burning.
I had a feeling tonight. (from: The Idea – Will you Please be Quiet?)
My marriage had just fallen apart. I couldn’t find a job. I had another girl. But she wasn’t in town. So I was at a bar having a glass of beer, and two women were sitting a few stools down, and one of them began to talk to me. ( from: Night School – Will you Please be Quiet?)
The call comes in the middle of the night, three in the morning and it nearly scares us to death. “Answer it, answer it!” my wife cries. “My God, who is it? Answer it!” ( from: Whoever Was Using This Bed – Elephant)
I can’t sleep, but when I’m sure my wife Vicky is asleep, I get up and look through our bedroom window, across the street at Oliver and Amanda’s house. Oliver has been gone for three days but his wife Amanda is awake. She can’t sleep either. (from: Menudo – Elephant)