In most short stories I've read there seems to be a fluid connection that caries throughout the whole story. This smooth transition develops characters and deepens plots as the story unfolds. From the readers perspective, this creates a visual following of the characters. As the reader I often find that I become engulfed in the unveiling of the storyline. I often assume that this is what writers want from the reader. After reading Chekhov's "The Darling" I no longer see this universally for all stories or writers.
Chekhov has a very unique style as a writer. I feel like his goal isn't to create a flowing story were He unveils the depth of each character but rather to build segments of specific portraits that carry and tell the story. However, the portraits create a jumpy feel throughout the story and seem to disrupt the storyline. In a letter to Aleksey S. Suvorin Chekhov states "When I write, I reckon entirely upon the reader to add for himself the subjective elements that are lacking in the story" (920). Chekhov's approach is one that allows the reader to image and create certain details. In a way Chekhov is reliant of the reader to develop his story or at least create the smooth flow most stories have. I'm not saying he doesn't have a story line but that he leaves certain details up to the reader to add, which sometimes create a choppy feel. An example of this can be found in the first paragraph of "The Darling". In this three sentence introductory paragraph Chekhov describes Olenka the main character, the natural setting, and the weather. Non of the descriptions are exhaustive, nor do they provide a very detailed picture. The very next paragraph starts depicting another character with the same brief approach.
In essence I see Chekhov as a painter throughout his writing, someone who creates portraits that tell his stories. I feel as if his writing style creates a slide show that tells the story. To me this is different from other writers who seem create movie like imagery. In a way Chekhov provides the portraits and the reader provides the animation.