I am a very happy writerly person. Yesterday, I received my September copy of Writing Magazine (my husband bought a subscription for me for my birthday - lovely man). If you turn to page 42, Under The Microscope, you will find me, or rather the beginning of the novel I'm working on. The author James McCreet critiqued the first 300 words of my novel very constructively. If you get a chance to buy the magazine, do tell me what you think of my extract and James' comments.
Roz Morris from Nail Your Novel has written an interesting article on her blog - How to stop back story slowing your novel. It's well worth a read.