We’re here for another interview with a newer member of our community. The title of this column is “Lower Decks,” hearkening back to the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode titled “Lower Decks,” in which junior officers aboard the Enterprise-D speculate on the reasons for recent unusual actions taken by the command crew near the Cardassian border.
This month’s interview is with the writer behind Lieutenant JG Jacin Ayemet playing a Bajoran / El-Aurian Science Officer assigned to the USS Arrow.
DeVeau: Tell us a little about the writer behind the character — where in the world do you hail from? Anything you’d like to share!
AYEMET: I’m originally from Birmingham, England, but moved to London in 2004. Now I live in East London in an area called The Isle Of Dogs, which is right by the Thames River, and close to the West End of London where a lot of the big shops, theatres, and cinemas are. It’s a great place to live.
I am quite a shy person until I get to know someone and then I guess I’m known for terrible jokes. I like to think that I am the sort of person who will help others if she can and believes in the very ideas of Star Trek, where humanity has overcome the petty things that divide people.
Apart from Star Trek, I am a big gamer and have a PS5 and a Switch. I love the theatre and movies. I run 2 or 3 times a week, have done a few half marathons, and I collect 4K Blu-Rays. Really looking forward to the Director’s Cut of ST: TMP coming to 4K in September.
What was your introduction to Science Fiction and Star Trek specifically?
I have always had a love of science fiction. The ideas that it’s able to explore and the new worlds that it conjures up. Star Trek was always on television and it almost became part of my life through osmosis. The movies with the OG crew were exciting and really captured my imagination, but it wasn’t until Star Trek: The Next Generation’s third season that I really got seriously into it. I went to a Star Trek convention in North England and saw people dressed up, guests from the shows (I think it was Mark Lenard and George Takei) and saw talks. There was no turning back after that! Then DS9 came along and although it had a rocky first season, I think it became a truly astounding show.
What is your experience with roleplaying?
Not a huge amount. I dabbled a little with D&D and a science fiction RPG called Traveller at school. I enjoyed them enough, but it wasn’t something that I maintained much after school. But now and then, I would find a group of friends and dip back into it. I think there’s something very interesting about making yourself (or should that be your character!?) part of a universe that draws you in and fires those creative thoughts.
What brought you to SB118?
Well, whilst I have a great bunch of friends that I see, we go to the theatre, or cinema, or clubs or whatever. None of them shares my love of science fiction, especially Star Trek, and there’s only so much you can get from YouTube or any other online communities. I wanted to be a little more involved in something that was more interactive and looking around that their internet SB118 really stood head and shoulders above the rest. It seemed to be more active, more eclectic, and more compelling than all the other groups, so it was a straightforward choice.
Why did you choose this specific character and duty post?
Ayemet is half Bajoran and half El-Aurian. The Bajorians are a fascinating race whose history I think allows a lot of scope to explore many varied aspects of their culture, their beliefs, and their place in the galaxy. For instance, in the DS9 episode, Sisko builds an ancient Bajoran ship and sails to Cardassian space, and yet that same race was subjugated by the Cardassians and then drawn into the Dominion war. How does someone respond to that? How does it change them, and how does Ayemet view something that she did not experience but still had a profound effect on her heritage?
El-Aurians are mysterious. Apart from Guinan, Tolian Soran, and Martus Mazur, they haven’t really been explored, and I thought that gave Ayemet some leeway to show different aspects of her character and a twist on what that might mean for her Starfleet career.
The duty post was a bit of a surprise, as Ayemet’s choice was actually in Counselling, but I actually think that it’s a great move to her feeling of being a fish out of the water, and having to prove herself.
Where do you see your character five years from now?
It has to be the centre chair! Captain Jacin has a nice ring to it, don’t you think? I think her career got off to a rocky start so it would be immensely satisfying to see her overcome her fears and become a captain. But at the moment, I am very much enjoying being part of the Arrow crew. They are SUCH a great bunch. Funny, talented, and passionate about what they sim. I genuinely couldn’t be with a better bunch of people and a better crew. I have a lot to learn and to bring my skills up to their standards, but boy, am I enjoying the ride!
Thanks for your time, Lieutenant JG Ayemet!
You can read more about Lieutenant JG Ayemet on the wiki.