Though characters **are** what they **do**, every surprising action has to make sense in light of the character’s back story. The challenge for the novelist is finding “Page One” and then revealing back story without bogging down the front story.
What is back story, and why back story matters to the front story
Identifying the various possible sources of back story (character, setting, situation, context…)
How to formulate back story and determine how much (and when) the reader needs to know
Finding Page One
Layering in back story so that it enhances the front story