Friday, February 3, 2012
This shoe brings up all kinds of emotion! Mostly fear. Not only of the thing inside it, but the height of that heel! Yeesh! I'd break my neck if I tried to wear that thing. I'm sure there would be a time and place where one might wear such a thing. Take a Halloween costume party for example.
Just like there is an appropriate time and place for shoes to be worn, there is also an appropriate time and place where backstory should be inserted. Instead of getting into all the places it doesn't belong right now (we'll get to that later), I'd like to discuss where it does belong.
Darcy Pattison explains it well here. She says that backstory is there to add emotional weight to the story. It can strengthen characters' motivations and make events mean more. She states that backstory should be put exactly where it impacts the emotional weight of the story.
Like the idea of using backstory to "hook" the reader, the idea of using it to heighten emotion is not so much a rule as a logical guideline. It makes sense to me. Does it make sense to you?
I'll be back next week for more on the topic of backstory. Until then, have a great weekend!