-Introduces the protagonist and provides a glimpse of his/her character, goal, and conflict.
-Sets up the world of the book.
-Shows "before" of the world and the protagonist, what they're like before the story events.
-Hints at backstory, or at least indicates there is some relevant backstory.
-Sets up the major story questions (external, internal, interactional) and probably poses the external story question.
-Initiates the external conflict.
-Hints at the internal conflict.
-Shows the start point of the central relationship.
-Ends with the inevitability of change.
-Shows how protagonist initially responds to the forced change.
-Shows how the world of the book responds to the threat and event of change.
-Forces more protagonist/antagonist action/reaction through events.
-Forces protagonist to confront (but not yet resolve!) internal conflict.
-Forces protagonist to begin to understand the cost of not resolving internal conflict.
-Gradually reveals the "secret" or the backstory as needed.
-Heightens conflict through events requiring greater emotional risk from protagonist.
-Suggests what the crisis might be– what the protagonist fears most.
-Produces reaction by antagonist/external conflict.
-Increases interaction within central relationship, heightening conflict but also increasing the intensity of the caring. With each event, the nature of the relationship shifts a little.
-Creates the point of no return– the event or action that means the protagonist cannot turn back.
**From this site, if you're interested in more: http://www.aliciarasley.com/artbeginnings.htm