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The Flashback

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  • The Flashback

    The past shapes the future. What you did yesterday will dictate what happens tomorrow.

    The Flashback is a useful tool for character development. It helps to reveal the character in new lights that might otherwise be impossible given the storyline. This is especially true in interactive fiction formats like we use here.

    There are a few things to consider when choosing to use flashbacks. For instance, you don't want to overuse them. If your character has a flashback once a page (or room), it is going to get repetitive and boring. Stylistically this could be done, offering the writer a chance to tell two stories at once; but unless that is your intention you should avoid over-use of the flashbacks.

    Another caution you should take if you are using flashbacks is to make sure you aren't just cramming them into the story. Something should trigger the flashback. Something they see or hear reminds them of something. Remember, flashbacks are basically character memories.

    When used properly, the flashback will help to shape your characters into more 3-dimensional personalities; and the readers are going to be able to form a greater bond with them.
    The organ is grinding but the monkey won't dance.

  • #2
    At the same time, remember how you, yourself, have flashbacks. Do you have them at the most perfect moments, having them grant you the forgotten knowledge you need to know RIGHT NOW? For me it doesn't happen that way. Flash backs happen when I'm not doing anything else in particular, or when I am talking to other people/telling them stories. To be realistic, consider having your character remember something vital after he's already travelled up the steep dirt goblin-filled hallows of Mount Kystor and he gets a chance to rest, eat, sharpen his blade an masturbate before the next onslaught. He has nothing to do now that the priorities are out of the way, so he starts to think, freeform drifting like, and FUCKING PISS SHIT the words on the ancient scroll had been "detener y soltar rollo", not "detener y saltat rolla"!

    Now your hero will have to correct his mistake before the wizard casts the wrong spell! Ooh! If he fails the orcs will be able to break through the Bridge of Maldad and make it all the way to the Pearly Gates of Darfur!

    "The Secret" was right. You were thinking about adding Megaman to your ignore list. And it almost came true! The universe sends you this hyperlink to make your job a lot easier. Click it now.


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