It’s good that this was in the Guardian, as that rag itself has an air of the Bulwer-Lytton about it, do you not think?
To be precise, it is meant to be opening lines of bad books but it’s shifted to include just bad metaphors or similes, bad analogies perhaps – I’m not sure even the supposedly good writers today know the distinction.
These are some which might come under the Bulwyer-Lytton heading:
1. When she tried to sing, it sounded like a walrus giving birth to farm equipment.
2. Her eyes twinkled like the moustache of a man with a cold.
3. She was like a magnet: attractive from the back, repulsive from the front.
Those are good entries to the canon. Incidentally, these are some of the winners:
A key factor in the awards is that they are deliberate attempts at bad writing and two nights ago, I had an attempt myself. In discussing why I could never marry a certain girl, I opined that we’d be like a washing machine wracking itself to bits when the drum went askew.
I mean, that is so appalling, so forced, so suffused with its own smug cleverness, then realizing it did not quite cover it, thus being extended, that I’d submit it might be a worthy entrant.
So obviously this evening, I’m going to ask you worthy folk if you yourselves can come up with some appalling ones, worthy of inclusion.