Something major has happened to one of my main POVs before the start of the story. But I chose not to start the story there because then there would be nothing for the other (seemingly unrelated) POVs to do while we waited for the thing to happen. It’s sort of the inciting incident for the book, yet we don’t know exactly what it is until chapter 7, and we don’t learn the full ramification/justification/reaction until chapter 10.
(short outline of the story below for clarification)
Is something like this okay? What tips do you have for doing flashbacks well? Huge flashbacks, specifically. (I think this can work if I do it well, I just need to know how to do that.)
EDIT: The bolded chapters below are of the POV in question (the prince), and the POVs in between are unrelated to that particular storyline. That is to say, plot-wise at least, the prince's storyline does not go on and on before we get our questions answered. If you were to read those chapters consecutively, it would be less than 10k words from learning something happened to learning what happened.
Timeline of Flashback:
- current day, goal/conflict of this scene arises from the fact that “something happened” (but we don’t know what)
Chapter 2 (another POV)
Chapter 3 (another POV)
- one third: character still dealing with the current-day ramifications of “what happened”
- transition: character dreams/remembers
- remaining two thirds: we’re in the flashback, mood is different, laying clues for the “something” that we know will happen, almost like a whodunnit
Chapter 5 (another POV)
Chapter 6 (another POV)
- still in flashback, indicated only by tone/location/phrases like “that night”, etc.
- the “something” we’ve been waiting for happens just before the scene ends, in the very last line
Chapter 8 (another POV)
Chapter 9 (another POV)
- first half: we’re back in current day, but now we understand a bit more about the character’s situation and actions, though, we learn what they’ve done to rectify the thing that happened
- another transition: daydream/memory
- second half: flashback to that night, we finally get a reaction scene to “what happened” and learn why/how they did what they’ve done to rectify the thing that happened
- transition back to current setting, and the chapter/story goes on without further flashbacks