Thomas was born to Norma and Tony Reid in a snowstorm in the mountains of Fort Collins, Colorado, two days before the Christmas of 1966. It’s pretty much an accepted certainty that he learned to be a Dallas Cowboy fan in the womb, and this theory is substantiated by the fact that, at six days of age, he took his first airplane ride to Texas, where cousins waving Cowboys-Packers playoff tickets before Superbowl I met his parents at the gate. He spent the first two years of his life living in Colorado and Virginia before the family moved back to Texas.
Growing up in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Thomas quickly learned to love the Texas Rangers, barbecue and Tex-Mex, 110-degree weather, cats, and Johnson grass, and to hate poison ivy, fire ants, tornadoes, boiled okra and fried chicken livers, and seeing more Yankee fans than Ranger fans at the home games. Thomas whiled away his youth with his best friends Steve Walton, Jerry Smiley, David Swindell and Al Martin, playing Dungeons & Dragons, hanging out at Six Flags Amusement Park, camping, talking sports, or driving his family’s 1953 Wyllis Jeep into the mud, except those times when his parents made him clean out the garage and mow the grass, of course.
In high school, Thomas performed with the marching, jazz, and symphonic bands, and he once ran over his own trombone with his car. The biggest thrill of his band days was winning the UT Arlington Jazz Festival and being invited to perform at—and attending—the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland in the summer of 1983. Thomas graduated high school in 1985, convinced he was going to be a civil engineer.
After a year at the University of Houston, Thomas returned to the DFW area and changed his major to liberal arts. There he spent some of his happiest days, attending college at UT Arlington and playing D&D with all his old friends, whose characters explored the Temple of Elemental Evil together. Eventually, he found his way to Austin, where he met his wife Teresa (while gaming!) and got a B.A. in history from the University of Texas in 1989.
Right after graduating, Thomas made a living in various odd capacities (like selling books and building wooden swing sets in Texas and doing statistical analysis for studies on the elderly in Indiana), just like every other well-paid history major. Then, one fateful day, Thomas answered a TSR advertisement in the back of Dragon Magazine seeking professional editors. Being hired by the company that produced his favorite game was akin in his mind to becoming a professional baseball player or astronaut, so he and Teresa moved to Delavan, Wisconsin in the fall of 1991.
Thomas lived in Wisconsin for nearly six years, working initially as an editor and eventually being promoted to creative director at TSR, Inc. When Wizards of the Coast purchased the company and relocated everyone to Washington, the Reid family packed up their minivan and headed west. During his ten-year stint with the company, Thomas had a hand in a variety of interesting products and lines, including core D&D, Forgotten Realms, Ravenloft, and Planescape, as well as the Star Wars and Wheel of Time RPGs. In addition to gaming material, Thomas has written numerous magazine and web articles on the subject.
Thomas eventually returned to his Texas roots, and today he lives in the greater Austin area with his beautiful wife and three kids—Aidan, Galen, and Quinton—along with three cats and a pet rat. He splits his time at home between homeschooling his three boys and freelance writing. He has published over a dozen novels and numerous short stories and has contributed creative content to several computer game titles. When he’s not working, Thomas loves to go hiking and camping, play with his kids, and root for the Rangers, Cowboys, Stars, and Texas Longhorns. He also loves to play softball, indoor soccer, touch football, basketball, tennis, racquetball and golf in the daytime, and to game, read, write, and paint miniatures after dark. Unless he has to clean out the garage or mow the grass, of course.