Character Feature- Lauren
Lauren is an Earther who was among the passengers of the 737 that the Arathians saved from the vacuum of space, and deposited on the unfamiliar planet of Aeonas. Back home, she’d gone to school for fashion, and was a buyer for a small chain of boutique stores in Miami, Florida. None of which helps her (or prepared her for) life on the colony.
When writing her character, I tried to imagine what life would be like for someone who lived in Miami (or any major city) to suddenly be uprooted from everything you’ve ever known, and thrown into a subsistence lifestyle. For me, I know that I like the conveniences of living near a city; I like shopping, getting a pedicure, the occasional massage, and having my hair shampooed at a salon. If I had to give all of that up, I’d miss it. I’d manage, of course, but I’d still miss it occasionally.
Lauren has adapted to her new life, but she doesn’t have her previous confidence to go after what she wants: Ian and Bilal. “It’s hard to swing your hips in reinforced utility boots.”
As I was writing Shipmates, my team of editors expressed concern that Lauren might be too shallow, but I disagree. I think that a lot of people can relate to the fact that she’s had a difficult time adjusting to life on the colony. Most people would miss fast food, getting dressed up for the occasional night out… and I know I’d miss my favorite high heels. Maybe that’s shallow, I’m not sure, but I can relate to Lauren’s struggles, and I hope my readers can too.