I love it when the Bulwer-Lytton awards roll around. Inspired by Bulwer-Lytton's classic opening line, staring with "It was a dark and stormy night" (read the whole sentence - it's worth it), the award goes to the worst first sentences that can be invented.
My favourite this year is Stuart Greenman's take on a fantasy epic: "A quest is not to be undertaken lightly – or at all! – pondered Hlothgar, Thrag of the Western Boglands, son of Glothar, nephew of Garthol, known far and wide as Skull Dunker, as he wielded his chesty stallion Hralgoth through the ever-darkening Thlargwood, beyond which, if he survived its horrors and if Hroglath the royal spittle reader spoke true, his destiny awaited – all this though his years numbered but fourteen."
I really, just really really, want him to write more so I can find out about royal spittle readers!
Andrew Manosk is also a worthy runner-up, although I think he's been watching The Simpsons: "Towards the dragon's lair the fellowship marched -- a noble human prince, a fair elf, a surly dwarf, and a disheveled copyright attorney who was frantically trying to find a way to differentiate this story from Lord of the Rings."