I've been reading some classic stories, courtesy of Paul Hatcher. The Pedestrian is by Ray Bradbury, the author of Fahrenheit 451. A man takes a walk on a November evening. The writing is evocative, yet spare. There isn't one wasted word. The tale itself is science fiction, and as with all good SF (even the stories that are full of aliens) it concerns the human condition and where we might be heading. The story was written in 1951, which makes it uncannily prophetic.
The second tale, August Heat by W. F. Harvey (written in 1910) has the feel of a ghost story, which is not to say that there are any ghosts in it. You'll have to read it yourself to find out. Again, it is simply written, and all the more effective for being understated. Having recently returned from Budapest with temperatures approaching 40 degrees, I could really feel the heat.
The other two stories are graphic tales. The first, Eureka! by Alan Moore in Tharg's Future Shocks reminded me a little of the Monty Python sketch about the man who invented a joke so funny that everyone who heard it died laughing. Again, it was very simply written. There was no need for lots of descriptions or explanations because everything was in the drawings, which evoked emotions and attitudes in only a few lines. The second graphic story was a Judge Dredd tale about Umpty Candy, the best taste in the world.
I suppose what the four stories have in common that is significant for writers, is the fact that they succeed through using as few words as possible. Less is definitely more–something I must remember the next time I write a blog.