That is the question!
What’s more important in fiction writing, the background or the story?
I have to confess that I find it much more interesting to build up a whole world, inventing places, peoples, religions, creatures and societies than I do writing the actual story, which can often seem laborious. So whilst writing a story I could easily get sidetracked into explaining the world which my characters are moving around in.
But that’s the challenge if I am to write a novel: how do I keep the story flowing and yet also introduce the context without interrupting the flow? The trick is to do it in little bits so that the reader can build up a fairly comprehensive picture and just keep the characters doing stuff and talking.
And if there’s so much information about the world that I can’t share it all in a novel I can always add it as an appendix a la Tolkein, or even write a special encyclopedia for it! lol