on Writers Helping Writers:
Story openings can be difficult as authors struggle to introduce the protagonist, show them in their everyday world, hint at what’s missing, and begin the vital process of building empathy. And all of this has to be done in a way that doesn’t drag the pace or overload readers with exposition and backstory narratives.
It becomes even more complicated for stories containing unique or otherworldly elements that readers won’t readily understand. Trying to explain a tribble, flux capacitor, or the imprinting process of dragons can easily devolve into long explanatory passages that leave readers yawning and wondering what’s in the fridge. Not the impression you want to make with your opening scene.
But it is possible to get that important information across in a way that will keep readers engaged.