Panel placement for rear wall reflection problem

So here is the situation. I cannot, for practical reasons, bring my speakers out to an optimal distance from the rear wall. So I am going to treat that rear wall using a sound absorbtion panel such as Sonex. I plan to buy a box of four 2' x 2' panels.
My question is, where relative to the speaker should I place the panels? One directly behind each with one directly above that (making one 2x4 vertical section basically)? Would the second panel be more effective if it were beside the first panel (a 2x4 horizontal section)?
I realize that acoustical questions can be very complex, but in general, where would you start?
FWIW I always thought that the reason for bringing your speakers out into the room was fundamentally to reduce excess bass caused by rear wall reinforcement, not to reduce the magnitude of higher frequency reflections off the wall caused by speakers (although that can be a side benefit especially with dipoles). To answer your question, the panels should be placed on reflection points just as you would do for side wall reflections, essentially between the two speakers, not necessarily behind them. Another thought, is the use of dispersion for the back wall as opposed to absorbtion. Many folks prefer this manner of dealing with high frequency reflections, including myself, to deadening the wall.
That might well be the case, I am a little new to trying to control room acoustics. I know two things: I have a pretty bright room and my speakers are a lot closer to the back wall than recommended. They are monitor type speakers, so excess bass reflection may not be a problem (the rest of the system is on the way, any day now, so I can't say for sure yet). In the end what I will do is just use trial and error. I'm just trying to get some idea before I go stabbing around in the dark.
Jb3, Trial & error is the only way to go, but many folks here, including myself, have a lot of pratical experience dealing with room acoustic's, but other than answer your specific question, its tough to help without further information about your "bright" room. If you want more help tell us about the size of your room, the size and location of doors, windows, openings. The location of your speakers in realtionship to the side walls and the rear walls and your listening position. Also include floor and wall furnishings and furniture such as bookcases, chairs sofa's etc. The more information you give the better the quality of the comments you will get.
OK, I'll give it a shot. The reason that I didn't in the first place is that it is a very unique room. Standing in the middle of the room facing the speakers:
The right hand wall is basically all glass. It is about 15' long with four 7'x3' windows. The front wall is fairly standard, the speakers are mounted at the recommended height and width, about 8' apart. Between the speakers on the front wall is a fireplace. Above the fireplace is a TV alcove with a TV in it. The left wall gets interesting. To the left of the left speaker is a staircase, with a passthrough into another room. Then a 8' section of wall. The rear-left corner of the room is a hallway. There is no back wall really, it opens into the kitchen. The kitchen is VERY live acoustically. Lots of tile, glass, and counters. The room is carpeted. Two leather couches in an "L" shape, one against the 8' section of wall, the other out into the room.
So as you can see I have some challenges. One thing I am going to do is install heavy fabric vertical blinds to tame those windows. Other than that I'm just not sure.
Thanks for any help.
I would use the sonex or something thicker with a carpet over it for aesthetic reasons. Heavy drapes over windows are also very good.
Tough room - trial and error rules. The first thing you want to do is to try to deaden the first relection points as much as possible.I agree re the kitchen area being a major problem. Is there any way you can put something behind the sweet seat to absorb or deflect the reflections from this area, i.e. bifolding panels covered with heavy fabric, which you could fold up and put away when you aren't using them? Heavy drapes over the windows would be better than the blinds, but the blinds would be better than nothing, especially if when they are down they don't present a flat surface. On the 8ft section of wall on the left is their any space which you can treat (I like to use book cases filled with books of various sizes and irregularily placed)? Here is another trick to try which may not deaden the bright aspect of your room but could help with the clarity of the highs because it lengthens the time of arrival of the first reflections (and its counter intuitive as well as strange looking at first.) Play with the toe in beyond the normal "straight ahead to slightly pointed in". Cross the axis of the speakers in front of you 'til the axis of the speaker is pointed somewhere between your head and the adjacent wall. This could also help fill in the center of the sound stage and widen the listening position. Sorry I couldn't be more helpful.