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Nell Carroll Photography

Howdy. I’m Dave Dalton Thomas. I am a Texas writer.

Some people say I’m pretty damn Texan. I try my best. I’ve got a five-foot-tall Styrofoam armadillo that says “Lone Star Beer” and a fine appreciation of vintage taxidermy and rusty things. I’ve traveled to just about every county in Texas (230+ and counting) and interviewed all sorts of characters. I’ve eaten barbecue from Silsbee to El Paso and found every bar and bad place to be along the way.

I was born in Heidelberg, Germany. My dad was in the Army and that was how it happened. I’m still the only one in my family, as far back as memory goes, who wasn’t born in Texas. I doubt that my first book is going to make me famous enough that this would be some sort of scandal, but I’m not taking any chances. Yes, I'm German-born. Get over it.

Let’s talk about Texas some more, because a Texan doesn’t know when to quit. Billy Joe Shaver told me a story one time backstage at Willie Nelson’s Fourth of July Picnic at the Stockyards in Fort Worth. That’s probably the most Texas thing that ever happened to me, or anyone for that matter. Heck, Tommy Lee Jones could kick down my door in his cowboy boots tonight and beat my ass to death with an armadillo and my dying words would be “you call that Texan?”

I graduated from Texas A&M University in 1993 and worked for newspapers in
San Angelo, Victoria, Beaumont and Austin. I was never a reporter (copy editor and designer, mostly) but I did write stories about things that interested me.

Currently, I work for the state as a writer for the Health and Specialty Care System. I’m married to a good-hearted woman and we have three kids.

For those of you who have read all this, here’s a little bit of trivia.

  • While I was at Texas A&M, I told people I was the only Philosophy major who was also in the Corps of Cadets. I don’t know if that was really true, but nobody corrected me. After failing a philosophy class out of pure laziness, I ended up graduating with a degree in Journalism.

  • I once rescued a mouse from Ray Wylie Hubbard’s swimming pool.

  • One of my biggest writing regrets is that I never invented a reason to go interview Sammy Baugh when I had the chance. Damn.

  • I’ve had a long history of being successful at interviewing grouchy old men. The only one that I recall turning me down was legendary roadie Ben Dorcy. He shook my hand when I introduced myself, but when I said I was a journalist, he took his hand back like I was a snake. I still think Ben was awesome, though. Got a picture of him in my office.

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