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Flashbacks: Awesome or Bane of Your Existence?

Flashbacks

Today’s topic comes from QSFer Tam Ames – “Flashbacks in books. Discuss. (As in memories, not PTSD type flashbacks)”.

OK, I’m game. I regularly use flashbacks in my stories. I try not to overuse them, but it’s not uncommon for me to use at least one entire scene as a flashback, usually to illuminate a character.

But over-use of them can lead to confusion unless it is handled very carefully. In the novella I’m working on now, I do use them fairly liberally, but in a very structured way.

So here are my questions – as a writer, do you use flashbacks, and if so, how? As a reader, do you like them or loathe them?

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