Backstory is important
Oh man... six interviews. I am exhausted. There's more on the horizon, but I at least can take a small respite. And man, I could use it. Between preparations and my day job, stuff like writing (and running a tabletop group) have had to take a back seat. I will say this, with great excitement and enthusiasm: I have some offers. This is going to be amazing.
But back on the subject of writing, since I now have a little bit of time. I am inching closer and closer to being able to plot out the new bulk of book 1 for the The Paladin. I'm understanding the antagonist, knowing how they they think, fleshing out their world, and, of course, thought up plenty of backstory that will never get mentioned in the work itself. Fun.
But that's part of the game. You need to know what's going on if you're going to show the results. I'm a firm believer that you can't skimp on the backstory of characters, especially your antagonist. You don't have to do exposition dumps; I highly suggest against them! But you need to know why your characters are doing what they do, even if the reader doesn't. Internal consistent logic. Even if the reader doesn't know exactly why someone is doing something, they can see consistent logic within a character's actions, logic that is informed by the backstory you have created (but not necessarily shared.)
The best part about this, I think, is that beyond understanding your characters' motivations better, this allows you to have material ready for supplementary reading or sequels or whatever you want to give to your readers. Sure, you have to have some patience, but you can't write a (good) book if you don't have at least a little patience. I've been working for years on my story and it's on the 8th draft now so... yeah.
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Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.