Jim McCarter is a mild-mannered, fifth-grade teacher in his Sycamore Elementary School classroom. But on paper, he battles his brother for supremacy in the desert, jeopardizing the safety of children at a summer paleontology camp.
His students’ parents shouldn’t be worried — McCarter’s evil side only comes out in his first comic book, “Pulverized Density & Dinosaurs #1,” which he recently wrote and published with a Lilly Teacher Creativity Grant.
McCarter will sign copies of the comic book from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Kokomo Comics, 1201 S. 17th St. Retired Kokomo teacher Ed Pulver, who is the comic’s hero, Taylor teacher Steve Dishon, who is one of the villains, and several former Kokomo students, who also are characters, will attend the signing as well.
Pulver, Dishon and McCarter all formerly taught together at Central Middle School.
McCarter said there are nine characters and he expects most, if not all, of them to be at the event.
The story is based on a trip McCarter and Pulver took about 10 years ago, to dig for dinosaurs in Wyoming. He and Pulver are brothers, and in the story both have super powers to manipulate mass and density.
“I use my powers to locate and steal good skeletons from the desert, and [Pulver] uses his powers to battle with me,” McCarter said, adding that his character is manipulated by Dishon’s character to steal the dinosaur fossils.
“In the end, Ed and I reconcile and Steve gets to go to jail,” McCarter said.
He has been a comic book fan since he was a child, and continued to collect them as an adult. He said he had always wanted to write one, and when he heard about the teacher creativity grant, “I thought this would be a cool way I could do something educational, but also have fun with comic books.”