The Curse

2002

Review #8:
Reviewed by: TheSuperhermiT
Comments:
This was awesome! At one point I felt like this world could be real, with an almost Star Wars "legend" kind of feel to it. So many cool concepts in this story that I liked: the curse itself, the tribe, the chosen one and all that it took to bring him about, his glasses, the priests casting of the runes being just for show, seeing both sides of a coin, the ultra-violet crayon and then the Keeper of the Sight-a concept, how awesome was that? I can't believe how cool the ending was and I didn't see it coming...I definitely learned something.

Review #7:
Reviewed by: Austin
Comments:
This was the first of your short stories that I ever read, and I have to say that I really enjoyed it. Though I preferred the description of the effects "The Curse" had on humanity to Zarry's story line, I enjoyed that part as well, especially towards the end when he began to debate with the Keeper of the Sight. All in all, a very thought-provoking, entertaining story. ****

Review #6:
Reviewed by: Dave
Comments:
I like the premise -- at times it seems the "Curse" and the "Sight" are interchangeable, at least for the civilized people. I'm not perfectly certain whether they are interchangable, but I kind of like the idea that the difference is subjective, i.e. how a person approaches the situation.

I also like the premise. It's a fun idea. For a short story, unfortunately, it requires a lot of explanation and I think I was about halfway through the story before I started getting hooked into the premise and the characters. Just the explanation for that first half could probably be half a novel if dramatized -- and it is intriguing, almost an apocolyptic scenario that turns on its head. Plus, it has the psychological and mystical, religious and political, sociological and technological ramifications that you covered and thought through quite well and concisely (though I'd still preferred like 100 pages of dramatization, finding all of this out along with a viewpoint character; I like disaster/apocalyptic scenarios, though).

Zarry's conversations with the priest were enjoyable, because Zarry immediately had some obstinance and character, and said some unexepected things. Zarry's use of logic in debate with the priest was neat, because it was practical to Zarry -- his people's way of life and their beliefs, and Zarry's place in all that. I had expected the typical, "Yes, Master."

I like the idea of all the world's "knowledge" needing to be erased, and that it wasn't that everyone needed their vision so much corrected as they needed to abandon their old beliefs and start over. It's a fascinating story. The major drawback is that the majority of it is exposition, and when I finally get a sense for things, the story is over. In that way it's very anti-climatic.

Review #5:
Reviewed by: Jessie
Comments:
I was debating between a 3 or a 4 star rating. With most people it would have been a 4 but having read some of your novels, I'll hold you to a higher standard. ;)

I enjoyed this story because it made me think. The idea of having two different types of Sight is fascinating, and humanity's reaction to it -- both immediately and over time -- is even more so. At first I was waiting for a character to latch on to, but once I started thinking of the whole of humanity as that character, I found I liked the effect a lot. And I defintely think you've got its character down! (Seeing Zarry as a parallel POV character was what made the other part click for me.)

I was confused at first by what Zarry's people saw without their glasses. I tried to go back and re-read earlier parts, but that didn't clear it up. After I finished the story, though, I looked at your notes and saw that you seem to have intended for this to be confusing. If so, I like what you're going for there. If you were ever to do another version of this story, I wonder if you could come up with a way to make it clearer to the reader that they're SUPPOSED to be confused and not to worry about it. That'd be a hard thing to pull off, but I believe you could figure out a way. Or maybe other people pick up on the intentional confusion there quicker than me. ;)

I am not entirely sure what to make of the ending, but that's through no fault of the author's; that's just because it made me stop to think. Killing knowledge? Very surreal. It sounds like a terrible thing to do, but at the same time, maybe we sometimes need to 'kill' what we think we know to see something differently.

Overall, this was a bold story that I enjoyed particularly for its insights into human nature. Nice job!

Review #4:
Reviewed by: Mikey
Comments:
Wow, what a great story. I am in complete awe such a rich tapestries of words and thoughts. And I quote ( He couldn't imagine that the human brain had been so designed to actually see the world the way his natural eyes did, but if all the books were right, the rest of the world truly was living in ignorance . Blissfully.)

I wanted to be Zarry such wisdom his words so precise, this story is a true work of art and I will have words with anyone that would say differently I feel smarter after reading it, as well as more full their is so much truth in the words. And as for the 5 star grading I am sorry but I can not stop at 5 I would have to say 7 of a possible 7, incredible. The vision that are given in your words are awesome and the plot mysterious and well crafted. and for lack of a better word PERFECT!

Review #3:
Reviewed by: Dan M.
Comments:
Here's my opinion...

First off I want to say that I really enjoyed how quickly I got into this story.
This to me was a completely origional idea that I think has the potential to become a movie, especially with all the harry potter, and lord of the rings type of stuff going around, this as a movie could spark a real interst in my opinion.
There were a few things that I wondered about, one of which got answered later in the story and one did not.
When you were talking about how the people had to think up new words for the ways of seeing new things, you didnt give any of the things that they were seeing or any words that had to be invented.
I wanted the story to elaborate more on what these were and what they would have been.

Another question that came to me at the beginning of the story was "What about the animals and peoples pets?"
So maybe the explination of that should have been put more towards the start of the story when the reader starts to wonder this.

This story reminded me of another post-apocolyptic story that I have read by the author Orson Scott Card, a fantastic sci-fi writer who wrote a book called "Folf of the Fringe" which had a different reason and concept to a new beginning in human history.
This book Im talking about was also very cool to me because it takes palce in the future right here in the Salt Lake Valley.
But back to your story, like a previous review that was posted, I felt like the end was cut a bit short when so much elaboration was spent in the middle or the "guts" of the story, to end the story without the same type of treatment.

This story was awesome though, a great concept that held my attention the whole way through.
Very well written, and again I beleive this idea has commercial capability!

I would recomend reading this one, although a bit long (I read it in two chunks over two different days) its well worth the read.
For this great work I give you four stars!

            "****"
Good job, keep writing awesome origional ideas like this and you have a lot of potential as a book and screen writer. Awesome possum! : )

I forgot one other thing I wanted to point out.
There is a sentence at the end of a paragraph that summed up exactly how I felt about this whole "Curse" thing:

"And the Curse had a cause too, though no one can say whether the guilty party had given a curse or lifted one."

I thought this was great you put this in because when reading this it was esential to agree with what the reader was probably wondering themselves because of all the cool stuff the "Curse" had given them.

Actually one other question just came to mind.
When our main character killed the priest, it seemed a little strange that he could be killed so easily after surviving for over 40,000 years with no resistance.
So were we to assume that he just let the main character kill him?

Ok thats all lol cool story IVY you rock! :

Review #2:
Reviewed by: bakasama
Comments:
interesting... verrry eeeenteresting. A few hints to the technophile that lurks within, but not overdone in sci-fi jargon. This story certainly isn't "guano". Found the last part a trifle disturbing, as it was a bit of a stark contrast to the battle of wits that just beforehand... but that was probably the point^^; just kinda too quick an end, IMHO. Also, well thought out description of society's reaction to such an extreme change in our perceptions, if somewhat optimistic.

'twas a good read, despite my previous misgivings:P

Review #1:
Reviewed by: The Author Herself
Comments:
This story, being both third person and very detached, is a bit of a departure for me. I think I did a decent job, anyway, describing the Curse's effect on mankind, though I think I did that better than the other half of the story detailing Zarry's role. It was an interesting experience to write it. I'm not sure how much the science of it makes sense since obviously I made up a lot of this crap, but I kinda like that it's got a lot of commentary on human nature in there.

Read it:

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