Originally from New Jersey/North Yorkshire, Roger Topp largely grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, where he planned to be an architect. He attended the University of Virginia’s school of engineering, but spent more of his time in writing workshops and the theatre, not to mention skipping many classes altogether in favor of hanging late nights with rowers, climbers, archers, and fencers. Despite this, he graduated with a degree in Environmental Science (Meteorology), studying Saharan dust effects on the South American rainforest.
He came to Alaska to study ocean acoustics and sea ice in the Greenland Sea at UAF’s Institute of Marine Science (Mark Johnson, advisor) and then creative writing at UAF’s MFA program (Frank Soos, advisor). He stayed for family and to build a house, trading salt water for the boreal forest.
Roger has been a builder of furniture and a maker of games, a prize winning poet and an award winning fiction writer. He has won six state championships and one national championship in fencing. For more than twenty years, he has worked at the UA Museum of the North, currently as Director of Exhibits, Design, and Digital Media. Curiously, this has taken him, on many occasions, back to the ocean.
His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in Andromeda Spaceways Magazine, The Maine Review, Dunes Review, Into the Void Magazine, Whiskey Island, Bennington Review, Zyzzyva, and West Branch, among others. His Collection, Imaginary Friends and Monsters: A Not Entirely Nonfictional Memoir, is currently seeking representation.