I heard about this neat publication called The First Line. They supply writers with a first line, and you use that line--exactly as is-- as the first line in a short story and submit it to them for review and possibly publication.
The line for winter submissions is:
Herman Sligo was a bit actor who played Uncle Emil in three episodes of the popular television series The Five Sisters.
Submissions are due 2/1/2009. I'm going to make an attempt at creating a story around this line. Anyone want to join me?