Is it okay to have just two chapters of split time switchover alternating with the present (chapters)?. I.e. the second and fourth chapters portray the story of the protagonist's ancestors, which has some relevance with some of the internal and social conflicts of the protagonist. My question are:

  1. Is it okay to have a split time switchover for just two chapters at the beginning?
  2. Though relevant, would it dilute the attention of the reader from the main story? Though, from my point of view it feels fine
  3. The split time switchover tells the story of the protagonist's grandfather and great grandfather and their struggles in building a business in a new country. I sometimes feel I'm trying to push too much information in just two chapters. It's just a gut feeling.
  • Welcome to Writing.SE! Generally, you should only be asking one question at a time; I suggest editing this to focus on the main issue, otherwise your question risks being closed as too broad.
    – F1Krazy
    Dec 11, 2021 at 14:19

1 Answer 1


This happens multiple times in Holes by Louis Sachar, so I think it's fine, yeah. As long as those stories relate back to the main plot of the story, you should be perfectly fine!

  • There is a risk of confusing the reader or diluting the reader's attention, but it all comes down to the writer's skill. As you say, if everything is related to the main plot, that should keep the reader on track.
    – Stuart F
    Feb 11, 2022 at 10:58

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