In music, the hardest thing to play are the rests. Likewise, the hardest things to write are those which must remain unwritten.
A large portion of a novel, and an even greater part of a short story, should remain unwritten by the author. An author may perform a great deal of research in order to craft a believable world or plot, or to learn about their characters’ professions. However, the majority of that information will not be needed by the reader. The same is true of a character’s backstory, most of which remains unexpressed or hinted at throughout a novel.
But there are additional elements of a novel that are best left unwritten, some of which I have outlined below.
What Should Remain Unwritten?
As I stated above, a character’s backstory should be one of those elements that remains mostly unexplored upon the pages of the novel.
Backstory is the character’s past–whatever happened
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