Driving Right for the Cliff

Of course, you may plan a story that maintains tight focus to the end, with scarcely any exposition at all and perhaps just two characters. Many of Poe's short stories follow that pattern; I think of the narrator and doomed, foolish Fortunato, who provide the entire cast of "The Cask of Amontillado." And the plot is down the stairs and down the stairs, pausing only to collect wine and brandish the necessary mason's trowel as the narrator prepares to wall his victim up in the ancestral wine vaults to avenge a (perhaps) imagined insult.

That's the pattern in most genre short stories. The story flies like an arrow and hits the target at maximum speed.

If your story is going to have a direct, unencumbered narrative line with no digressions or shifts and virtually no exposition of any sort, then from the opening you'll continue the same scene or move right to another, with no interval at all.

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