I'm reading Pat Conroy's Beach Music. His prose is beautiful and full of descriptions of the South Carolina coast and the people who live there. One of my major writing weaknesses is description. I have to force myself to write down the images that I see in my head, yet I love reading them, especially those by Southern writers.
While reading this morning I came across this sentence as he's describing the home of a friend - "Four vehicles were parked around the yard, one permanently.". It made me stop reading, not because it's a particularly beautiful sentence but because of what it accomplished. I saw that old wreck of a car without him having to paint me a picture.
It was a perfect example of a writer trusting a reader to fill in the blanks. We're told, especially with short stories, to trust the reader, now I understand how.