‘Dark and stormy night’ successor
A grotesque comparison of a steamy love affair to mist through a manhole cover has won a Washington man this year’s grand prize in an annual contest of bad writing.
Garrison Spik, a 41-year-old communications director and writer, took top honors in San Jose State University’s 26th annual Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest with this opening sentence to a nonexistent novel:
“Theirs was a New York love, a checkered taxi ride burning rubber, and like the city their passion was open 24/7, steam rising from their bodies like slick streets exhaling warm, moist, white breath through manhole covers stamped ‘Forged by DeLaney Bros., Piscataway, N.J.’ ”
The contest is named after Victorian novelist Edward George Earl Bulwer-Lytton, whose 1830 novel “Paul Clifford” famously begins “It was a dark and stormy night.”
Entrants are asked to submit bad opening sentences to imaginary novels. The top winner receives a $250 prize.