Thomas P. Hopp is an award-winning writer of science fiction, mystery, and thriller books and stories. He is an active member of both the Mystery Writers of America and the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Before starting his writing career, Dr. Hopp studied protein chemistry at Cornell Medical College and genetic engineering at Rockefeller University. He helped found the multi-billion-dollar Seattle biotechnology company, Immunex Corporation. He discovered and patented genes for powerful immune stimulating hormones and advised the team that created Immunex's blockbuster arthritis drug Enbrel. Tom invented the first commercially successful nanotechnology device, a molecular handle called the Flag epitope that is now used in laboratories around the world to study every major disease of mankind. He also worked with paleontologist Jack Horner, excavating bones of the nest-building duckbilled dinosaur Maiasaura. He published scientific articles on his brooding-to-flight hypothesis, in which wing feathers of birds developed first for nesting and then for flying. He plays guitar and bass, and has performed onstage with blues legend John Lee Hooker and rock super-groups The Kingsmen and The Drifters. He has lived in San Diego and on Manhattan Island, but now lives near Seattle.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in West Seattle. My earliest days were spent in a housing project on the banks of the Duwamish River. I remember my mother scolding me for coming inside with mud on my shoes. That was Duwamish River mud, and I have always felt a connection to the riverbanks that were home to Chief Seattle and his people. Most of my fiction includes Northwest native culture at one level or another, most often as a central element of the mystery or adventure tale.
When did you first start writing?
I have written all my life. In fact, the first draft of my recent novel Rainier Erupts was penned for an 8th grade English class assignment to write a magazine-style article about my hometown. The teacher liked my writing ability but gave me a B because she felt I overstepped the assignment when I described the beauty of Mount Rainier and then proceeded to describe the big volcano erupting and covering the reader in hot lava and ash.
Rainier Erupts is an epic tale of volcanic catastrophe—a modern-day Pompeii. This novel dramatizes the cataclysmic events that could occur if Washington State residents were caught off-guard by a sudden outburst from the smoldering giant.
THE NEW WILD WEST—WHERE DINOSAURS LIVE AGAIN! Ever had one of those days when you had no other option but to bullfight a charging Triceratops? Or dodge an angry Pachyrhinosaurus? Or fly on a giant Quetzalcoatlus? Then you know how Kit Daniels and Chase Armstrong feel. Action, adventure, and even a little romance are the order of the day in a world gone mad with dinosaurs!
When an old Native American shaman is accused of murdering a cedar tree poacher, Dr. Peyton McKean is called in to unravel the dense tangle of clues hidden among the majestic trees of a Pacific Northwest rainforest. Police detectives are baffled but McKean's brilliant mind leads him past the obvious--and into danger.
Dr. Peyton McKean investigates the mystery of a Seattle geoduck clam digger killed by an impossibly high dose of red tide toxin. As he follows a trail of suspects and suspicious activities, McKean soon finds his own life in jeopardy.
Genetically modified tomatoes are the least of our worries! These canines have picked up a human-like intelligence somehow. Hopp has written a frightful tale in the tradition of The Hound of the Baskervilles but just a bit more scary -- and believable.
A murder on the wet streets of Seattle, a faked video of Osama bin Laden, Microsoft computer graphics gone bad, and political intrigues at the highest levels draw Dr. Peyton McKean into one of the most treacherous cases of his life.