Author Guest Post With Brian Rowe + Giveaway!

Brian Rowe has kindly agreed to guest post here about his work, and share his inspiration for becoming a writer in honor of his newest release, Over The Rainbow.

 About The Author:
Brian Rowe is the author of eight young adult novels, including the Happy Birthday to Me trilogy, and the upcoming Over the Rainbow (August 6th). He is currently pursuing his MA in English-Writing at the University of Nevada, Reno, and is hard at work on his next novel.

Brian Rowe on the Web:
Twitter | Official Page | Goodreads | Facebook
Guest Post:

Over the Rainbow, a book that incorporates a love story, loads of action, the rapture, dinosaurs, and The Wizard of Oz, started with one simple idea. What if a gay teenage girl escaped from her bigoted father by packing herself into a large box and mailing herself across the country, all the way to her true love? This nugget of an idea stuck with me for a few years, and I’d always been meaning to explore it. It wasn’t until I told the author Shaunta Grimes (Viral Nation) in January 2012 the concept that I started getting more excited about turning it into a book.

Shaunta was so enthused about the project that she started working with me on it almost every day in spring 2012, allowing me to toss ideas off her. She helped me conclude that putting her on an airplane would be more visual and interesting, rather than her just getting packed away in a mailing box. And she also helped me with the apocalyptic elements of the scary new world I introduce in the book. I’ll never forget the look on her face when I told her I wanted to incorporate dinosaurs into the plot. The book was already getting a little crazy, and then I made it even more nutso by introducing the living, breathing dinos. I really wanted to be the first author to mix an LGBT coming-of-age story with a dinosaur-infested action adventure. Lo and behold, Over the Rainbow was born.


So why The Wizard of Oz? The idea of re-imagining one of my favorite movies of all time was actually an accident. When I started outlining the book, I didn’t think about The Wizard of Oz, but the similarities started popping up right away, and ultimately they had to either be embraced or dismissed. I knew the main character Zippy Green was going to meet three people on her journey, and I also knew I wanted to send her to Seattle, Washington. When I learned that a nickname for Seattle is The Emerald City, I knew that The Wizard of Oz was destined to become a major part of my book.


I thought it was fun in the writing to incorporate elements of The Wizard of Oz just enough so that the fans would see how it’s all a subversive, modern re-imagining, but I also made sure to have the references be subtle enough so that you could read Over the Rainbow without thinking about The Wizard of Oz, and the book would still work as a separate story. Some moments are obvious (Zippy says “I have a feeling I’m not in Kansas anymore” in Chapter 2), and some are super specific, the kind in jokes you’ll blink and miss (take note of Zippy’s home address!).It took me the longest time to come up with a title for my newest book, and The Wizard of Oz helped me in that regard, too. I love that the book is called Over the Rainbow. Not only does it reference the book and movie, and not only does a rainbow show up in the final scene, but the image of the rainbow brings to mind pride and tolerance in the LGBT community, which is the most prevalent and important theme that runs throughout the book.


Over the course of eighteen months, Over the Rainbow has turned into something entirely different than I ever could have imagined way back in January 2012. It has certainly evolved into something unique and surprising, over the course of ten drafts, professional editing, and two rounds of copyediting. But I’m proud to say I think it’s my best and most ambitious work


About The Book:
Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000030_00047]
Title: Over The Rainbow
Author: Brian Rowe
Publication Date: August 6, 2013

A modern re-imagining of The Wizard of Oz!

Zippy Green never meant to fall in love with a girl, but when she does, her ultra-conservative father tries to send her to anti-gay camp. At the Kansas City airport, however, she hides inside a giant suitcase and sneaks onto an airplane headed not to the camp, but to Seattle, where her online love Mira lives. Halfway through the flight, the plane barrels out of control and crashes into the ground, knocking her unconscious.

When Zippy awakens, she finds that most of the passengers have vanished. She doesn’t know what’s happened, but she’s determined to find out. She begins a quest on foot toward Seattle, and along the way, she meets a teenager with a concussion, a homeless man with a heart condition, a child without a shred of bravery, and a terrier named Judy. Together the group discovers that more than two-thirds of the world’s population have mysteriously disappeared. But that’s only the beginning…

All Zippy wants is to find her Mira, but before she can she has to contend with two outside forces. The first is her homophobic father, who does everything in his power to keep her from the girl she loves. And the second is extinct creatures of all shapes and sizes, including living, breathing dinosaurs, which have replaced the missing population.


Find Over The Rainbow Online:

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Happy reading until next time!