The Great Seattle Earthquake is on its way

Scary headline, huh?

But The Great Seattle Earthquake is on its way for sure. You see, it’s my latest novel and I’m in the middle of the 4th draft. At some point soon, I’m gonna call a halt to all the revisions and just publish the dang book!

Wow! This book is both the scariest story I’ve ever tackled, and the most difficult to write. I’ve been at it for more than two years. Things have gone on for so long that my Art Department has outstripped my Editorial Staff. I gotta say, I like their artwork. Click on the cover image to magnify it. See how that jagged white line cuts right through Seattle? That’s the Seattle Fault. Formerly poorly understood, it has recently gotten some attention from geologists and city planners—and they’re getting nervous.

Not only does the Seattle Fault represent a pretty substantial threat to all of us who live on and around it, but it is responsible for a second, possibly nastier problem. It has put a huge wrinkle in Puget Sound Country to produce a thirty-mile-wide sediment-filled hole called the Seattle Basin that underlies Seattle, Bellevue, Bothell, and surrounding areas from the Cascade Foothills to Hood Canal. These softer sediments can shake like a bowl of Jello in an earthquake.

That bodes poorly for high-rise buildings in the area, as explained in this Seattle Times article by investigative reporter Sandi Doughton. Ms. Doughton, who is a major information source for me in earthquake-related matters, states that although city and state officials are studying the new threat and beginning to tighten regulations on skyscraper construction, many tall buildings on our skylines are of uncertain strength when it comes to the sort of shaking that might occur within the Seattle Basin.

So, how does all this fit into The Great Seattle Earthquake? Very nicely, thank you. You see, my mission in writing the novel is both to provide scary entertainment, and to inform readers about the very real dangers that will confront us all, when and if that day comes.

I expect The Great Seattle Earthquake to be released in early 2019. Let’s hope the Seattle Fault doesn’t release its pent-up power anytime soon.

About Tom Hopp

Thomas P Hopp is a scientist and author living in Seattle. He writes Peyton McKean mystery stories and the Dinosaur Wars science fiction series.
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