Having a good story to tell is only half the battle – you can still make a mess of it in the telling. Here are five ways of doing just that.
Tell it in flashback
If a story is good enough, it doesn't need some fancy framing device to tell it. If the most interesting elements of the story are being told in flashback while the immediate front-story is static and less interesting then you're telling the wrong story. Flashbacks – if used at all – should augment a ripping front-story that is told through immediate and dramatic scenes.
Save it to the end
Don't make the mistake of confusing a mystery with a 'reveal' – a mystery involves a propulsive narrative driven by the reader discovering (along with the protagonist) the truth - whilst a reveal is just the writer holding out on the reader in the hope of capturing a similar kind of propulsion. Not the same thing. Your story should be exciting and revealing all the way through.
Have the best bits happen off page/stage/screen
I used to do it as a novice writer because I was scared of dealing with the big dramatic scenes - but I've seen it done by writers paid thousands by the BBC for the privilege. So the cuckold comes round to punch the cuckolder in the mouth but we don't get to see the cuckold finding out? Please.
Don't realise the full dramatic potential of story events
'So you slept with my friend?' said the cuckolded husband.
'Yeah, he was great,' said the wife.
'That's terrible of you. I'm off down the pub,' said the husband.
You get the point.
Make it the back-story
If the back-story is so good you have the front-story characters sitting around talking about it for the entire novel then you need to ask yourself why. The front-story should be the most compelling narrative in the novel – the back-story should either be the beginning of that story or shed further light on it. If the back-story IS the story then you need to make it the front-story.