For the people of Earth, society has achieved a sort of Utopia. Death is almost imperviously guarded against, and could even be considered a choice. Systems to evaluate your potential for any employment field exist, all the while maintaining and promoting personal choice. Humanity has become an interstellar civilization, having expanded their holdings across hundreds of planets. New planets are constantly being found and Settled. Before Settlement, however, a planet must be Pioneered.
A Pioneer is a volunteer. Their role is to prepare a planet for Settlement, the act of officially colonizing a planet. They are tasked with personally evaluate a planet's suitability for habitation in terms of personal experience, along with selecting an initial colonization site as well as laying down initial infrastructures. The occupation, while lucrative, is as respected as it is feared. Most Pioneers are selected, but even those selected are given the option to refuse:
Pioneering is the only career in which Death is a common, even expected risk, a consequence of its nature of being far removed from the powerful medical facilities afforded to the rest of society and even military occupations. Besides Death, Pioneering employs a method of transportation that carries the potential for "Chronic Displacement", an irreversible condition universally attributed to those who employ cryonic facilities. For this reason, few Pioneers prepare more than three or four planets.
Without debate, it is the most dangerous, but most necessary, choice of occupation.
Alys Pavaís is an eccentric student, but achieves high Aptitude Scores for several subjects. As a result of these scores, she has an exceptionally wide variety of choices for occupation: ranging from Law Enforcement to Education to Medical among several others. However, as evidenced by her plethora of written works and accompanied by the complaints of teachers as she writes in their classes, her eventual choice of occupation is clear: She aims to be a Creative Writer, her favorite and best subject.
She goes on to Pioneer more planets than any predecessor.
This is a Story of Stars, and the Girl who travels across Them.