So, it’s not like an official anniversary or anything. I kinda missed that. But the public first heard of my characters from The Arbiter Chronicles back in October, 2000–15 years and a half a year or so ago, when we performed my first radio drama at Farpoint.
Taken Liberty, my first Arbiters novel, premiered just ten years ago, officially in March, 2006. A few months ahead of that, the Prometheus Radio Theatre podcast premiered in the Fall of 2005.
Guess I’ve been doing this for a awhile, huh?
It gets even scarier when I realize that I created Terry Metcalfe and his friends during my senior year of high school: September, 1982 to May, 1983. Terry was based on me. (Duh!) He was intelligent, had a bad temper, a quick wit, and a desire to be part of something amazing.
Kevin Carson, his best friend, was, to quote the film Parenthood (the most quotable film of all time) a “goddamn amalgam.” He was all the best friends I’d ever had, rolled into one. When I decided he was also in love with Terry Metcalfe, he became the voice for all the unrequited loves I’ve ever lived through.
Kaya was created as a romantic foil for Metcalfe. Her waspish wit and fearless nature she took from my dear friend Beatrice Kondo, but she was an enigma to me for many years. It wasn’t until I first wrote a story from her POV that I realized how much I loved her.
Cernaq was the shy kid and the class brain. Another amalgam, I guess. Or maybe that aspect of my own personality that sits quietly in the corner, knowing that I have all the answers, and waiting to see if anyone’s gonna goddamn ask me for them. Cernaq’s either a sweet little angel or the world’s biggest douche. I’m not sure which.
And Aer’La… I don’t know anyone like Aer’La. Strike that. I know a lot of people like Aer’La. She’s been hurt, but, as a result, she’s tough as hell. She’s rage personified, but she just wants to be loved.
Captain Atal is every stalwart leader or wise man I ever admired, from Professor John Robinson to James T. Kirk. From my college professor, Dr. Freedman, to the first boss I had who really believed in me, Chief Jim Heller.
Dr. Faulkner is a crazy, scary high school physics teacher whom I adored for her bluntness.
And Pallas? Pallas is THE woman. Yes, she’s the woman for Terry, but she represents the elusive one that we all look for. The one our lives won’t be complete without. She’s beautiful, she’s intelligent, she’s damned scary. You can never predict just what the hell she’ll do next.
Those are my Arbiters. Oh, there’s Sestus and Darby, too. They’re always fun. And the evil Admiral Fournier, let’s not forget him. I’ve spent more than 30 years with most of them, and shared 15 of those years with you. I hope those of you who have taken that ride with me have enjoyed it, and I hope you’ll come aboard again for Sacrifice Play, my latest Arbiters novel.