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Tag: writing styles

It was a dark and stormy night

In my technical writing circles, the name of Edward Bulwer-Lytton is well-known for a writing contest. The contest is to write a deliberately bad opening line for an awful novel, for example, something beginning with “It was a dark and stormy night…” Well, that’s the beginning of a line by Bulwer-Lytton. He may have been popular in his day, but now, we giggle at his style. Recently, I came across one of his books, The Last Days of Pompeii, and had to share. Without further ado, I present Chapter 1 from the 1926 edition published by Charles Scribner’s Sons for your reading pleasure. (Note the sentence that begins with “He wore no toga…” – it contains 149 words!) Chapter 1: The Two Gentlemen of Pompeii “Ho, Diomed, well met! Do you sup with Glaucus to-night?” said a young man of small stature, who wore his tunic in those loose and…