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Reviewer: Basscop69 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 17, 2021 01:21 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

Hehe, the disclaimer on this is a particularly good one, poor Karen. (Also, burning Utica to the ground just always cracks me up). This is such a good Karen voice, her observations on the people in the office feel spot on and very her. And of course Michael didn't actually use the time to get anyone's names, amazing. I also really enjoyed Karen's observations on Pam (and really, poor Pam) - and then the twist at the end!! The idea of Jim not coming back, and Pam's reaction here, is heart-breaking. Although I also love Karen connecting the dots so quickly. Really interested to see where this one goes!

Author's Response: I have been waiting to use that disclaimer for a VERY long time.

As Karen notes, it just wouldn't be Michael to turn his "performance" into something that might conceivably useful. I'm glad you felt like this was a good Karen voice... I feel like I was sort of working backwards from the idea to who Karen was here.

The thing is, Karen's pretty sharp! I think if she hadn't been so smitten she would have easily worked these things out. To quote You're The Worst, "the heart is a dum dum."

Hopefully you'll see more... soon? Probably not. Maybe?

Reviewer: BigTuna Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 16, 2021 08:26 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

Hi, I LOVE THIS. I have wanted a Karen POV for forever and almost wrote one but you have done it much better justice than I ever could in my life. And I love Jim not coming back. Honestly, why the hell would he? I mean, his family, I guess. But whatever.

Also, I quite literally screamed with laughter at that disclaimer.

Author's Response: Yeah... this is always one of my things about the period between Branch Closing and The Merger. Jim's choice to return calls for some explanation, because really... feels like something he should have given much more thought than he seemed to to not doing. And Pam's total passivity there is maybe realistic, but also deeply self-destructive in a way that I feel like deserves some attention. (The latter will be addressed in another story. The former, I have a *very* specific headcanon explaining, which will ALSO be addressed in a TOTAL DIFFERENT story.)

There's some real interesting canon Karen POVs, and I'm kinda interested in how you can explore her canon self by putting her in alternate worlds. Although honestly this scenario sort of came to me whole cloth. ALSO please write a Karen POV.

Lol. I've been waiting for a chance to use that one for a while.

Reviewer: tinydundie Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 13, 2021 09:43 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

"She thinks about the look in her eyes, and the look Jim had on his face all summer. How quiet she’d gotten, and how Jim always seemed to go silent and distant after too many beers. And she realizes that he was telling the truth.

His leaving Scranton didn’t have a damn thing to do with Michael Scott."

oof, killer.

I'm so intrigued at Karen POV stories. Excited to see where you go with this. Are they all going to diverge from canon?

Author's Response: A not-in-love Karen is... perceptive.

Thanks! Yes, that's the plan at the moment... although this may end up culminating in a grand adventure for canon Karen. Then again it may not. I really shouldn't make promises about future fic with my track record.

Reviewer: Dernhelm Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 11, 2021 02:10 am Title: Bearer of Bad News

My reaction? I'm this close to crying in the middle of the workday (and where's my Phyllis?) And I love Karen here, you did justice to her!
And Jim's an ass. Fantastic, charming, heartbroken but an ass nevertheless.
And also, I like that the zest of the story was revealed only in the end. I went from 'ohmygoshnoooooo' (the 'staying at his parents' part) to 'huh, nice turn of event!'
I'm quite anxious about Jim/Karen's content generally, but I'm looking forward to more chapters from you!

Author's Response: Sorry!!!! Yeah, I feel like Karen's kind of easy to access here - which is maybe how you need to get into her head? Figure out who she'd be without Jim?

That's a *really* interesting reaction to Jim here, because a lot of this one is about me trying to make a non-wishy-washy, doing-right-by-Karen, mostly-morally-upright Jim. I will say in his defense, the last line is right! Karen will probably be fine in Scranton! She'll be running the place by Christmas... which will have karoake machines!

I'm glad you think the twist worked!

Just know, this is all about JAM as seen by Karen. These will mostly have happy endings. Mostly.

Reviewer: Maxine Abbott Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 10, 2021 08:07 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

Ok so I did not see that twist coming and while I feel bad that Karen is stuck there my heart is breaking for Pam.

Ok this - I promise, you’ll be getting free drinks off Michael Scott stories for the rest of your life.” Is a great line and so true

The clown reference really good one too as is the formaldehyde perfume lady. Of course Phllys would be the one to ask and then comfort poor Pam.

Yup - the last line. Karen saw it here if only she had on the show.

Oh and once again the disclaimer was too funny and a perfect example of how she gets beat up in fic or thrown into a porno. Now will these all be from the Karen POV because I'm so on board for that (but open to other tertiary characters too.. I also appreciate a good outside POV

Author's Response: I'm glad the twist worked. And I will restrain comment on Pam, but you never know... maybe this just gets her to her Beach Games moment faster?

It very much is. And I'm sure even in canon, Karen took advantage of it.

Yeah, I very much had Branch Closing shipper-on-board Phyllis in mind here.

Well... she found out eventually. But it raises some interesting questions as to how much her perception of Jim was shaped by why she THOUGHT he left Scranton.

See, now I'm rethinking that, and I want to be clear I have enjoyed many a fic in which Karen gets trashed and intend no shot at anyone here. But yes, these will mostly be from Karen's POV.

Reviewer: Once Signed [Report This]
Date: June 10, 2021 06:26 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

Such a good take on Karen. I've always felt she goes mental when she's protecting her territory, her romantic relationship with Jim. I wonder what she would have done if Dwight had tried to steal one of her clients.

"...she isn’t going to just drop a bomb and leave her to cry it out." is a nice, small reproof.

Author's Response: She's in a tough spot with Jim. She's in a fight she can't possibly win if Pam wants to fight it. I like to think she would have epically destroyed Dwight if she'd gone up against him professionally.

Karen would never leave anyone's ass crying by a fountain. This is a fact.

Thanks for taking the time to review! Glad you liked this Karen!

Reviewer: New Hogfan Signed [Report This]
Date: June 10, 2021 05:35 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

This is interesting.
Seeing Karen in this way as a intelligent single woman, instead of a blind girlfriend who becomes desperate to hold onto a guy who she knows has feelings for someone else.
I think that I could have probably liked Karen if she hadn’t been with Jim, or at least let him go when she found out that he loved Pam.

Author's Response: I do think this is a chapter of Karen's life she's going to look back on and be horrified about - because I think Karen is a smart, and love just made her do the wacky. And I totally agree that she can be a very likable character, she just happens to be the point of the love triangle. Part of what I want to get into with this. Thanks for taking the time to review!

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 10, 2021 05:17 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

So Karen is staying with the Halperts, but all of a sudden Jim is not coming back to Dunder-Mifflin? Umm, ok, well that's a twist to be sure.

That being said I thought this was a good look into Karen's mindset. She's straighforward and used to a more professional workplace. Culture shock seems the most kind way to say what she's going through right now for sure. Even still, she's insightful and has a bit of fire to her. Nice job on bringing that out.

Author's Response: Okay, so there are three things going on there:

1. One of the main questions underlying this chapter was "what if Jim genuinely tried to do right by Karen?" So part of this is Jim going out of his way to help her move to his hometown.

2. It's meant to be a signal of where their relationship is - in sharp contrast with Back from Vacation Jim who doesn't want girlfriend Karen within two blocks of him, this version of Jim is setting up drinking buddy Karen in his childhood bedroom.

3. It's meant to be a subtle indication that Jim's first choice was always not to go back to Scranton.

Also 4. I wanted Karen to complain about the clown painting.

So that didn't really work, huh?

It was definitely fun to try to look at Dunder Mifflin through Karen's eyes, and especially through the eyes of a Karen who doesn't have Jim guiding her through it all. As often as we see Karen who's just done with Scranton from the get-go, canon Karen frequently seems fully capable of rolling with the punches - I really wanted to make her someone was horrified, but would maybe be okay to survive those six months even without Jim. Glad you enjoyed her!

Reviewer: nicemorningtoo Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 10, 2021 05:15 pm Title: Bearer of Bad News

“His leaving Scranton didn’t have a damn thing to do with Michael Scott.“

Rip my heart out and run it over, djc. It’ll have the same effect as that sentence. Ouch. Poor Pam. I wasn’t expecting Jim to not be there and then for Pam to be so upset once she found out, my heart is broken.

This is a super interesting concept, though. I love how you’re writing Karen. Please update soon.

Author's Response: Sorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry. But, you know. It's true! He didn't leave because of Michael! (And why *does* canon Karen think he left, huh?)

I mean, this is very much supposed to be canon for Pam's story right up until the beginning of The Merger, when Martin walks through the door alone. (One of the other animating thoughts was that Pam gets *absurdly* lucky that her extremely passive approach to the merger doesn't horribly burn her, and if she were not a television character she probably wouldn't have.) So yeah. This is a gut punch for Pam. But also maybe this speeds up her run to Beach Games?

I'm glad you're enjoying this version of Karen! Thanks for reviewing.

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