by Senior Airman Aaron-Forrest Wainwright
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Airmen have a variety of ways to express their creativity. Some build, play music, take photographs, but one Ramstein Airman shows off his creativity by writing novels.
Capt. Bart Hopkins, 435th Air Ground Operations Wing meteorologist, wrote his first novel during back-to-back deployments to Bosnia.
“I found myself with more spare time while I was deployed than I do at home,” Hopkins said. “The absence of daily family activities like soccer games, scouts and school assemblies freed up hours of each day.”
The book was co-authored with his friend, David Elliott, who Hopkins had met in 1995 while stationed at Ft. Campbell, Ky.
The majority of his first book was written while he was in Bosnia in 2001 and 2002. They were able to pick it back up in 2011 and get it published last year.
“I prefer to be with my family but when that isn’t possible, having something positive to do that I love, such as writing, helps pass the time,” Hopkins said.
Hopkins is originally from Galveston, Texas, but has lived in Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee and South Korea before being stationed here.
“My dad exposed me to books early in my life, which cultivated my passion for reading. The jump from being a reader to being a writer seemed like the most natural extension of something I already loved,” Hopkins said. “Life is amazing and I find inspiration and ideas everywhere. Taking ideas and creating stories that people hopefully enjoy, is simply incredible, almost indescribable. There’s not much I’d rather do.”
Hopkins is now halfway finished with a first draft of his next novel, which he might get published in September.