Date: August 25, 2019 04:00 pm Title: Chapter 9
Double review because I remember there was more I wanted to say about this chapter. First off, if I had any jellybeans left to give this story, I would have given this chapter one. So there's that.
A while back I made the analogy of how a bone or heart breaks and that fixing a bone or a heart means more pain. In this chapter we see that analogy in action. Pam had her "re-break to re-set" moment earlier when she told Jim her June 10th story. Now it's Jim's turn. I like that Pam has already been down the start of this path. Because her heart is starting to heal she can be there for Jim as he "re-breaks to re-set" his heart. However what is wonderful is that they wouldn't have gotten there without the other.
The scars of those breaks I'm sure will always remain. It's unavoidable. But the thing about scars is that they are signs that yes there was pain in the past, but that pain is over. It's been addressed and dealt with. Eventually the scars will also fade to the point where one tends to forget about them unless they deliberately look at them. It's a hard process but it's great to see that both Jim and Pam are really walking down the path of healing.
Pam and Jim dumping out that bottle was another great way to show that. They don't need the crutch of alcohol anymore. I really wish I could give this chapter a jellybean because I really loved everything here. Wonderful job.
Date: August 25, 2019 01:49 pm Title: Chapter 9
There's been a lot of build up to this moment I think. Clearly neither Jim or Pam would have been ready to share their stories with each other when they first met. However now their relationship has earned the right. They trust they've built has led to this moment. While I don't love the events that led them to this moment, I love that they're both here.
Ready to finally trust someone with not just what happened, but the feelings of what happened to both of them. That they're willing to share their guilt with each other is, yes as you said, much more intimate than sleeping with each other.
Amazing writing to show all these emotions. Canon Jim and Pam are still there. Their banter and connection still shine through. Great chapter here AG.
Date: August 22, 2019 12:55 pm Title: Chapter 8
Wow. This chapter is so good! I don't usually review (I know, I know, I'm that annoying silent creeper) but I just had to tell you how well-written this was! It brought out every emotion I've ever felt, sneaking peeks at other people's Instagrams, and perfectly captured every bit of it. Well done! :)
Date: August 12, 2019 03:03 pm Title: Chapter 8
I am sooooo glad you updated. I’m obsessed with this story!!!! I can’t wait to read what happens next. Did Jim’s girlfriend die? Was he maybe drunk driving???? I can only speculate and hope that Jim and Pam’s relationship keeps growing. I love the dynamic you’ve created between the two. I hope there’s more interactions among them next chapter 😊
Date: August 11, 2019 08:24 pm Title: Chapter 8
I think Jim's words are telling here. The calm before the storm. I mean don't get me wrong it's wonderful to see both of them home with their families like this. It's great to see warmth coming back in their lives. I just get the feeling that since we've had Pam's breakdown moment, now we're about to get into Jim's. If that's the case thanks for giving them a day of peace before that storm breaks.
Anyway, like I said it was great to see them like this. That Jim's family really is behind him now is great to see. Not just Larissa, but Pete too.
I really liked the Pam section. That she's internalized everything and made it into her war cry as you said was a powerful scene to envision. Obviously there are still scars on her heart and likely always will be. But now she's starting to look past them. Way to go Pam.
I also get why she's so nervous about anything Jim related too. Here is a guy who really gets her. She wants to hold tight, but there's still fear there. Fear that if she opens her heart again it'll get trampled again. Legitimate fear to be sure. But then Penny shows up with the words of wisdom she needs. Great line there with Penny telling her to be careful with her heart and his. Penny's not saying keep your heart closed, she saying treat it gently. It's still healing and still fragile but it's getting stronger.
I didn't really watch a lot of How I Met Your Mother so the references went by me, but knowing your skill as a writer, I'm sure they were on point.
Date: July 28, 2019 12:38 am Title: Chapter 7
I loved that we got Karen’s perspective in this chapter too. I also love that you’re not setting her up as a love interested in any way. Definitely a few more hints at Jim’s history too - enough to leave us intrigued. I’m enjoying this story so much!
Date: July 24, 2019 11:11 am Title: Chapter 7
After the bodyslam that was last chapter, I'm glad you didn't really go into more really heavy stuff with this chapter. It feels like everyone needed some time to decompress. The opening bit with Pam and Jim getting breakfast and going to the park did that very nicely too. It seems that very slowly hope is starting to bloom back in their lives. It's fragile and small at this point, but it's there.
I liked how you had Karen. Yes, she's direct but she's also not harsh. That's a difficult balance to achieve, but she pulls it off well with Jim here. She pushes Jim just enough out of his comfort zone to get him to take a look around, but not so far as to cause him to panic and regress. Great way to use her character like that.
Seeing Penny was also good. She clearly loves Pam and Pam clearly loves her. That Penny is there to keep Pam honest about any booze in the home as well as her confidence that Pam can make progress was wonderful to see.
Jim and Pam's bond keeps growing. I love that they are there for each other. That they want to be there for each other. I hope we get to see more of that as the story goes on.
Date: July 10, 2019 11:11 pm Title: Chapter 6
I know you’ve mentioned your love for breaking readers and, holy hell, job well done. Here I am reading chapter 6 in bed and trying to quiet my sobs enough to not wake my husband. Gah!! So good. 💔
Date: July 10, 2019 04:25 pm Title: Chapter 3
Oh! Whew! Geez! That scene in the diner! Heartbreaking but that was so incredibly realistic. Absolute perfection.
I mean, I love when we get Larisa in any story and I am Thrilled what you’ve done with her here. Really great way to draw her character and I look forward to her POV showing up more (hint, hint).
Date: July 10, 2019 04:07 pm Title: Chapter 2
I was ROLLING during that first paragraph. Seriously. Rolling. I had to be picked up off the floor.
Oh, that bit about Ryan makes me feel a lot of things. It was fantastic and karma’s a bitch.
What I really, really love in this chapter is Pam’s unapologetic brazenness and her equal dose of self-loathing. God it makes her really beautifully complicated and I just love it.
I’m glad Larisa knows where he went. Now how about filling in the rest of us!!!!!
Date: July 10, 2019 03:09 pm Title: Chapter 1
See. You said you were going to do it. And I watched the music video and I cried and I was prepared. But I wasn’t, really. Cause I knew intellectually that you would do great but I wasn’t prepared EMOTIONALLY for this. Not at all. Here we go...
Date: July 09, 2019 05:30 pm Title: Chapter 5
This chapter is the one where I really had to remind myself that these are characters and not real people. If they were real people, I'd be handing both Jim and Pam copies of Codependent No More to read because I'm worried about their addictive personalities and how they're transferring the addiction from alcohol to each other.
Deep breaths. Good thing they aren't real people. But even as toxic as this could end up being, I LOVE their texting and the mid-afternoon conversations and the phone calls after work.
"I found a pair of nunchucks under my desk." Classic.
I really like how Jim was able to open up about how he lost his job, and not only that she listened without judgement but that she wanted to know more.
Because it's not codependency right? It's friendship. Right? Right.
Except.. ugh. The part where Pam knows she's putting up walls and hates herself for doing it and then there's the phone call with Karen and those walls weren't strong enough and now she's right back with the bottle and I'm back to worrying about both of them way too much.
Also, I loved the use of the text messages - such a great idea, and I loved the little details like the Gumby picture and Pam's excessive use of emojis.
Date: July 09, 2019 03:00 pm Title: Chapter 6
My heart. My heart. My heart. Oh bless Michael. So well intentioned above all else. I love his inclusion in this story. It’s nice to see Pam opening up to Jim (despite the worst of circumstances). I hope that she doesn’t push him away later because she’s feeling too vulnerable.
Not to be too over the top, but this story has literally been haunting my dreams so there’s that...
Date: July 09, 2019 01:57 pm Title: Chapter 6
Hoo boy. Yeah, so, wow. I mean really what more needs to be said that you didn't say? First and foremost Roy here is probably one of the worst Roy's I've ever read. That he caused Pam to spiral down to the point we see her now. I don't blame Jim at all. Assholes like that should be castrated.
I do love how Jim is there for Pam. That she's become so important to him that he can forget all the shit he's wading through and just be there for her. Keep it up Jim, because that's how you keep going forward. If you can't live for yourself, live for someone else. That Pam lets him in and tells him all this shows how she's depending on him too.
So yes this is broken JAM, their connection is still there. Masterful writing with this chapter even if it was so hard to read and envision.
Date: July 08, 2019 08:18 pm Title: Chapter 5
The graphics worked for me & they worked for me, like it was a really fun additional layer having them in there - I thought I wouldn’t really like it, but I did! It took the story to a whole new place of clever creativity.
I’m very interested about this Karen inclusion! I always like seeing her as a friend (to either Pam or Jim). I feel like there’s so much potential for that. I hope Pam is kind of off base in her fears. Although, I’m really wondering if we’re going to get a merger with Karen based on that set up!
It’s so nice to see Pam and Jim building their friendship in that Pam and Jim way...
Also, we’re starting to dig deeper into Jim’s background which I am very excited about! Can’t wait to see where you take this next.
I'm so glad that they worked, yay!
I struggled with how I wanted to include Karen, but I'm really excited for her part coming up here, and I hope you will all enjoy her, too.
Yes, the backgrounds are coming together soon! I'm a little nervous about it, but hopefully the buildup will pay off!
Date: July 08, 2019 07:38 pm Title: Chapter 1
Thank you for the bits you've given us, but there's MORE. The devastating parts are coming, I just know it. This chapter was so good. I can *feel* how the two of them are with each other. Fragile but maybe finding something to live for.
Author's Response: Oh, trust me, the devastating is on its way. I'm such a sucker for breaking characters (and readers, if I'm being honest), so hopefully y'all will hold on for it all! I am glad that you are enjoying it!