Every author gets questions. The most common one I get is this; Are you Ari Badu?
Answer; not even remotely.
When I got the idea for Home is the Sailor, it was Ari that came to me first. She’s not the typical, spunky heroine. She is very much an older, experienced woman who got handed a raw deal. She’s not overly confident, or filled with shining ability. Ari is more like tempered steel.
Her relationship with her brother, her only surviving family says a lot about her.
The door didn’t open immediately. She stood there waiting to see if her family even wanted to see her. She and Arden exchanged letters on the Codex, which was the only way to communicate in deep space, but it wasn’t the same as the trips home she never made anymore. Ari avoided Taarken like the plague, did very little business here in the last five years at all. She usually sent another of her haulers to handle this planet’s short runs.
She’s avoiding the whole planet, which is not the sign of confidence. In fact, Ari is a little bit riddled with self-doubt for part of the book. She takes a lot on herself, and sees herself as the guardian of her crew and her family. In that, she and I have something in common, I suppose.
Where there are bits of me in Ari, I suppose, is her loyalty. She never really gives up on the people she loves. That includes, Caden. Ari could have moved on. In fact, she tried to move on at one point, but it didn’t take.
She’d do just about anything to protect her son, her family, Caden or her crew. I call it mama bear. Most importantly, she inspires love.
That was the character I wanted to write. Ari is more ordinary than ordinary, but she inspires extraordinary love in the people around her. She adds to their lives and enriches them just by being there, and I think that’s something everyone in the world longs for.
It’s why I love romances. That act of loving and being loved is really essential for every human being, and the lack of it or the loss of it can change us in ways we never dreamed of, just as it changed Ari and Caden to lose each other.
So, Ari isn’t really based on me at all, but I would love to be her. I do feel I would love to fly around the galaxy in my own ship for a while. Wouldn’t we all?