Wednesday, July 13, 2011

July Secret Agent #36

TITLE: The Curse
GENRE: YA - Fantasy

There once were four simple sisters who were exceptionally ordinary. They were of average looks, modest status, appropriate cleverness and each with their fair share of suitors. It should have been enough.

But if the sisters were extraordinary in anything, it was their desire for more. They wanted power, beauty, wisdom and devotion. So they spoke to the moon and being the cold, cruel queen she was, the moon granted their wishes.

They were each given the gift they desired: a mirror for beauty, a dagger for strength, a crown for wisdom and a ring for devotion. But they accepted these gifts not knowing that there would be payment in return. Not knowing that wishes do not come free.

With each use of their magical gifts, the sisters began to change. When evening came and the moon’s gaze touched their faces, they were different. Their nails would lengthen, their blue eyes turned to yellow and their teeth sharpened as they arched their mouths towards the sky. The same throats that had once asked for what they did not deserve could now only howl.

Ruined by their own desires, the wretched sisters called to the moon again. It was not right that they should be cursed so cruelly, they said, for their wishes were no different then any other woman. Didn’t all women wish to be powerful, beautiful, wise and adored? Why should they be the only ones punished?

The moon, though wicked and cruel, also prided herself on being fair. So she considered the sisters’ plea.


  1. The fairy godmother bit and the ball make me think Cinderella, and the title kind of brings a darker aspect to the story. The mirrors are a bit confusing, but I don't think we're supposed to know exactly what they are or everything about the world yet. And I also like the words to describe Joy, a "vicious giggle," "slithered." I'm curious. I'd read more :)
    Ninja Girl

  2. I like this - even though it sounds like every fairy tale we've ever read - that's what makes it interesting. I think that if you carry this out properly I would be very very interested in reading more. It's a neat idea to write a YA novel like a fairy tale. I'm hooked for now!

  3. Just loved it!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's a very rich prose, old-fashioned (but GOOD old fashioned): my only doubt it's that it could be considered too "heavy"by most people, after a while, since usually fairy tales are short. But it's just my opinion, I was definitely hooked

  4. This is a good take on a familiar tale-type, but I'm already hoping for a single character to connect with, since the sisters are undifferentiated except for their gifts. I am not likely to want to invest in four nameless and interchangeable girls unless the writing and plotting is really good.

    Given the level of the prose, I'd read on for a bit, looking for a single protagonist to invest in.

  5. I love the flow and the tone of this entry! While I agree with some of the above comments that we'll soon need a main character to tie the plot together, I would definitely read on for a bit. This reads to me like more of a prologue or setup for the main story.

    That being said, only two nitpicks for me:

    1) I think these sentences can be combined -
    But they accepted these gifts not knowing that there would be payment in return, not knowing that wishes do not come free.
    Maybe a semi-colon instead of a comma here? (I'm terrible at punctuation)

    2) Not crazy about the title as it's a little generic. You have great prose so your title should reflect that!

    Good luck!

  6. I'm not going to critique your work, others have and will do a far better job than I can. Instead, I'll say, as a guy, I LOVED THIS! ABSOLUTELY AND POSITIVELY LOVED IT! The narrator's tone is magnificent; the elements of human desire and the consequence of such things are spot-on; and I love the idea of the moon as a villain (though it has been done in--don't laugh--My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic).

    Regardless, I offer you my full and utter support and I would very much LOVE to read a first chapter, or something like that. Of all the YA I've read, this has a STRONG chance of getting published. And making it big.

    Cheers. ^_^

  7. I would hope this would move very quickly to the POV of one of the characters or several pov's rather than this mode for the entire novel. It seems too removed. Good premise though.

    Miss Aspirant

  8. I think your writing is very strong and I like the dark quality of the writing.

    I assume that this is a prologue, which I think is unnecessary. I would like to start this story with the actual story, which I hope will be from the viewpoint of one or more of the sisters, or perhaps one of their descendents, who I assume will be werewolves.

    As a note, while editors might still consider an EXTREMELY unique werewolf story, they are a tough sell now.

  9. I guess I'm the odd man out here. I started out interested. I love fairy tales, and I love dark. But we go from the initial tale of the sisters wanting more, and they get it and I'm all set to hear about what they do with their new items, then you switch to them changing into wolves and I readjust my mindset for a werewolf story. Then you change again to whatever is coming up next. So I don't know where you're going or what the story will be, or how long it will be the story before you switch to something else.

    It does have that fairy tale tone and vocabulary. The writing is nice, but I'm just not willing to follow you into what may be another dead end.