Comic Con

Thank You NYCC 2015!

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Two words that sum up my 2015 NYCC Experience.
Two more words that sum up my 2015 NYCC Experience.

If I had to sum up my trip to New York Comic Con this year with two words, it would absolutely have to be, “Thank You.

Thank you, NYCC for giving us what was easily one of the most memorable shows that we’ve ever done.  When we started doing this show back in 2012, debuting the Bible 2 in artist alley, none of us expected the kind of support that we get from this show three years later.

Now I’ve been to several shows where the support for the Bible 2 has been completely overwhelming, causing us to sell out of the book in a matter of hours. However, I’ve never been to a show where I’ve literally sold out of absolutely every book and shirt we’ve had.

That being said, New York isn’t just about selling books, but seeing old friends and making new ones, and this year was probably some of the best that I’ve experienced. From all the aftershow hangouts with both fans and friends to the after parties, my liver will likely take a few weeks to forgive me. But it’s ok, it was absolutely worth it.

Needless to say, none of this would be possible without our fans, like you guys. Keep on being awesome and kicking ass!

MSP Recap

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Minnesota Comic Book Association's MSP Comic Con Logo
Minnesota Comic Book Association’s MSP Comic Con Logo

Well, it was a hell of a weekend back home celebrating my local hometown show at the MCBA’s MSP comic con at the Minnesota State Fair Grounds in Falcon Heights Minnesota. Now, there aren’t many other shows that can get more local than this show right here, especially since I spent the majority of my early life living none too far from the fair grounds.

I owe a special debt of gratitude to this show, as it was my launching pad to getting into comics and essentially helped me get my feet wet nearly six years ago, long before ‘Dead Reckoning‘ was published by Arcana and was still under its original title of Contagion. It’s also been one of the only shows that has been consistently (for better or worse) an extremely memorable experience … And this year’s how was no different.

Most notably, 2015’s show was a huge first in that I held my first panel, which was centered around diversity (and lack thereof) in the comic book industry. It was an exciting and an interesting experience to be a part of, and allowed me to delve a bit deeper into “why” I write the books that I write. It also acted as a bit more of a more intimate experience, allowing me to get a bit more personal with my Native American heritage in “Sioux Falls,” but also gave an in-depth look behind the reasoning for creating the Bible 2. So I’d like to say thank you to the other panelists for having me, everyone who sat and watched the panel, as well as the MSP staff and Lisa Olsen for setting it up.

Was a fantastic show to be a part of, and I look forward to creating even more debauchery next year at MCBA’s Spring Con … Errr … I mean MSP Comic Con.

Apparently the TSA aren’t fans of the Bible 2…

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After a long and exciting trip down to Wizard World Philadelphia this past weekend, it was time for me to fly back to Minnesota for my second local show of the month at MSP Comic Con in Falcon Heights. So I hopped a plane on Sunday to fly home for Mother’s Day and arrived later that morning. Everything seemed to have gone off without a hitch as I landed in Minneapolis… Well, almost everything.

Apparently TSA aren't fans of the Bible 2.
Apparently the TSA aren’t fans of the Bible 2.

I opened up my luggage at the baggage claim carrousel to grab the souvenir Star Wars Lightsaber that I had picked up for my son at the convention, and was greeted with several opened packages of my book, The Bible 2. What struck me as peculiar right off the bat about the whole situation was that none of my other titles had been opened. Neither Dead Reckoning, nor Sioux Falls appeared to have been disturbed in the slightest. Only The Bible 2 (and seven books of Abe the Aborted Fetus graphic novels unlucky enough to have been in the same packaging together) were opened and strewn about in my luggage as if Miley Cyrus “came in with a wrecking ball.”

So I went and talked to the Minneapolis TSA supervisor to express my concerns over how the contents in my bag were handled, I can safely say the amount of fucks given by him, was… if I were to round up and carry the one… Would still be zero.

Ah Ah ah!
Zero! Zero Fucks Given! Ah Ah ah!

The TSA supervisor said, and I quote “It isn’t our responsibility to take care of your materials in your bag. If you want to have them treated with respect, maybe you should put a note in your luggage.” After a few minutes of that, he then sent me on my way telling me I’ll need to file a report with TSA.Gov to recoup any damage and losses.

So when I got home, I opened up my luggage and started to tally up the amount of damage that my books had undergone from what I originally believed to be mishandling, and it was then when I realized the extent of damage. These books weren’t mishandled, they were deliberately destroyed.

I had one full graphic novel of the Bible 2: Volume 1: Hail to the King of the Jews, Baby! completely ripped apart, pages strewn across the bottom of the luggage while the cover itself was also removed. The first issue of volume #2 of The Bible 2: Double-Crossed was also ripped right down the center in half. In addition to those two completely destroyed issues, the Face Full of Peter Edition was also severely damaged as if the agent attempted to crush the comic up into a ball. All of which seemed to have been targeted due to either religious prejudice.

Oh I'm sorry, did this cover piss you off?
Oh I’m sorry, did this cover piss you off?

In total, over thirty-seven copies of the Bible 2 were severely damaged and are irreparable. The spine is completely smashed, pages are ripped and crushed, and even removed from the books, which are no longer able to be sold and resulting in a total loss of $895.

So this past week, I’ve spent several hours on the phone filing police reports, filing damage claims with the TSA, sitting on the phone with the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, trying to weigh my options. I’ve even contacted the Department of Homeland Security, where they are looking into this on an internal level, and potentially seeing whether this is qualifies as a hate crime, as I was notified that I was actually having my first amendment rights violated by a Federal Agency.

So as of now, this situation is currently out of my hands up until I either hear back from the TSA on my claim with their findings, or whether they choose to ignore me for six months and force litigation due to Federal Tort Claims Act.  Either way, it looks like I’ll be playing the waiting game. Until then, I’ll keep you guys posted on the latest developments.

Z.M.Thomas at Wizard World Minneapolis 2015

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Visit Z.M.Thomas at Wizard World, Table B9
Visit Z.M.Thomas at Wizard World, Table B9

Convention season is finally upon us, and our first show of the year is here at home. That’s right, a local show to kick off the year with Wizard World Minneapolis on May 1st through the 3rd of 2015!

Make sure to swing on over to table B9 and say hello to Z.M.Thomas, the writer and creator of Trepidation Comics, where he will be debuting his brand new comic, Joseph Smith in Space issues #01 and #02 in a single book. This book is extremely limited, and will only be available for a short time.

For additional details on the show, please visit Wizard World’s website for time and directions: Wizard World Minneapolis