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New Treat Backstory Like a Pungent Spice by Sandy Vaile

Sprinkle and blend the flavours of your character to achieve an irresistible aroma.

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  1. Sandy Vaile
    New this year at SavvyAuthors!:
    • New!!
    Level:
    Mixed
    Basic and Premium Members Prices:
    Premium Members $30 & Basic Members $40

    **Register by October 16 and save $5, use code BACKSTORYVAILE at checkout!**
    $5 off Early Registration Coupon-expires 1 week before class starts:
    BACKSTORYVAILE
    Category:
    • Characters
    • Editing
    • Dialog
    • Structure
    • Plotting
    • POV
    • Voice
    • Worldbuilding
    Have you been accused of too much telling or information dumps? Does your character have a fascinating history, but you’re not sure how best to convey it to readers? Avoid the pitfalls of backstory by peeling back the layers one at a time to discover the most effective delivery methods, how much to use, and how to make it drive the main story.
    Learning outcomes:
    • Understand how to use backstory to develop tension and engage readers.
    • Know where your character came from and is headed, so the backstory is consistent and relevant.
    • Determine which parts of the backstory are important, and which are just filler.
    • Be able to identify where backstory isn’t working.
    • Learn techniques to reveal backstory as part of the story, instead of information dumping.
    • Know when to release backstory for maximum effect.
    • Avoid backstory taking over the whole story.
    • Use backstory as a baseline from which to show character growth.
    This course best suits modern fiction writers with a developed character and story idea, so I can tailor feedback.
    Outline:
    What other participants are saying about Sandy Vaile’s workshops:
    • "The constructive feedback given on my work was priceless."
    • "I liked the friendly nature of the learning experience."
    • "This was a fantastic workshop with heaps of useful insights and techniques."
    • "I loved Sandy’s dedication to giving the best feedback possible. It’s made a huge difference to my writing already."
    • "Great structure, step-by-step."

Recent Reviews

  1. Connie Parrott
    Connie Parrott
    5/5,
    Whenever I asked about backstory, my writing friends all said "That's easy! Don't use too much backstory!" And there I stood, wondering "How much is too much?" Waited over a year for a backstory class to come along, and boy, did I hit the mother lode! God and SavvyAuthors could tell I was desperate. Sandy Vaile took my hand and led me through the dark backstory tunnel. I saw the light! Sandy's presentation was precise and entertaining. And there I had thought dribbling was just for basketball players. By equating backstory with spices like chili powder, I realized that I had been guilty of choking my potential readers with info dump. That's a felony in Texas, right? Seriously, Sandy did a powerful job of explaining the what, when, where and how much of backstory. She responded to our homework with thoroughness and welcomed questions. Now I can tick backstory off my writing worry list. One question for SavvyAuthors. Will you please consider offering Sandy's other classes? Especially "Show Don't Tell Is Like A Layer Cake" and "Hook 'em and Hang 'em". Thanks, Sandy!