Aiken Wine & Sign Regional Book Signing Authors
Ron Baxley, Jr. will be attending the 2019 Aiken Wine & Sign!
Ron is a renowned author in the genre world with several novels set within the universe of L. Frank Baum’s Oz series, with his latest Oz-universe novel O.Z. DIGGS HIMSELF OUT published in March 2018 and his first Oz graphic novel “ZIGGY ZIG ZAGS THE LIGHT AND DARK FANTASTIC” coming Summer 2019, both published by YBR Publishing LLC of Ridgeland, SC.
Ron’s Southern background figures in his work as does his love of Oz and his faith.
He received a lifetime membership from the International L. Frank Baum and All Things Oz Foundation in 2016 in Chittenango, New York for his work as an author related to the Wizard of Oz, work which dates back to 1999 when the First Edition of his book “The Talking City of Oz” was published. Ron has been a special guest, guest, and visiting author at Oz festivals and cons across the country since 2010.
Ron also likes most anything related to Disney, fantasy, and science fiction, which he has also written and published. He, in addition, helped his late father with a side satellite dish business when he was a youth and was encouraged by his father, a techie, to get interested in computers; he equates all of this with furthering his interest in science fiction.
After working on his certification and being an educator for 15 years in various capacities away from his home town, Ron returned home to Barnwell, SC, in 2015 to become a care-giver and to work as a part-time correspondent for the Orangeburg “Times and Democrat”, returning to an earlier career which he had for two years as a reporter at “The Aiken Standard” upon graduation from USC-Aiken in 1998. Ron, while working as a correspondent, began selling different types of Disney vacations through a travel agency on the side.
He lived in Columbia, S.C. for most of his life outside of university but also lived for a few years in Groton and Charlton, Massachusetts, while working for an outdoor education program, and for a few years in Charleston, S.C. and Prosperity, S.C. He considers his rescued Corgi, Ziggy, to be his child and even a fur-angel, and the dog figures largely in a lot of his work, being a minor character in “O.Z. Diggs Himself Out” (YBR Publishing) and the upcoming graphic novel “Ziggy Zig Zags the Light and Dark Fantastic” (also from YBR Publishing). For more information on Ron, please visit his author page at http://rbaxley37.wixsite.com/ronbaxleyjrofoz or do a web-search for “WIX” and “Ron Baxley.”
Synopsis of “O.Z. Diggs Himself Out” (available at the Aiken Wine and Sign):
“O.Z. Diggs Himself Out” is a young adult and adult fantasy novel which couples Southern literature with Oz fantasy in a satirical travelogue. A cursed seventh generation descendant of the wonderful Wizard of Oz, O.Z. Diggs VII, can longer mention that he is from that magic family as part of a curse from the Wicked Witch of the West before she died. O.Z. Diggs VII, an eccentric storyteller with rainbow-dyed hair and who was once reluctant to use magic, has been in Boone, N.C. as a displaced Ozian-turned-Southerner and goes on a quest throughout the Southeastern, Eastern, and Midwestern United States to regain his magical roots. He does this through finding pieces of his ancestor's wizarding costume he left behind, and even using the Cowardly Lion staff which was left to him. O.Z. Diggs VII contacts and meets the Society of the Walking Cane, a group of senior citizen good wizards and witches from Oz who are incognito as a walking group with their walking canes being their disguised staffs. But he also discovers a group of evil witches and wizards called the Society of the Stitches, so-named for stitched red symbols on their clothing. The Society of the Stitches will stop at nothing to keep O.Z. Diggs VII from breaking his curse and returning to Oz. Not only this, but the annoying Nomes of Oz (gnome-like creatures who love jewels they claim they made) are on their way to the United States to reclaim their jewels and cause mischief. Even with the help of some new fantastic friends, including a Corgi brought to life straight from the pages of another book, can O.Z. Diggs figure out how to stop the Society of the Stitches and the evil Nomes as well as break his curse? Along the way, on his quest, O.Z. Diggs VII becomes so much more than his Southern identity and background. He shows that anyone can transcend both!
“Ziggy Zig-zags the Light and Dark Fantastic”, Volume 1 (available Summer 2019)
This graphic novel follows the adventures of Ron's real-life Corgi companion, Ziggy, in a new hardback adventure in early summer, with art by Vincent Myrand, and lettering and lay-out by Ali Tavakoly. Within this graphic novel Ziggy the Corgi, who has been a steed for the elves, goes on his own quests to rescue various characters from different fantasy worlds, including Neverland and Oz among others, and does his best to evade the Dark Elf and his minions during his mission!
O.Z. Diggs Himself Out, a fantasy book by author Ron Baxley, Jr. which combines Oz fantasy with Southern literature in a satirical travelogue. The book has an eccentric storyteller narrator go on a quest, a quest to determine that he is so much more than his Southern identity and background; that he can transcend it
“Ron Baxley, Jr. writes in an imaginative first person perspective style which, alongside a serious plot, has elements of humour, and also darker humour to it…There is a lot to like about this story, such as adventure and world building. It definitely fits quite nicely into the fantasy genre, and will appeal to that audience. Imaginative, fun, and enjoyable, O.Z. Diggs Himself Out makes for an entertaining read, whether you're a fan of the Wizard of Oz or not.” British fantasy author K.J. Simmill for Readers’ Favorite
QUOTES FROM 6 FIVE STAR REVIEWS OF O.Z. Diggs Himself Out:
“I must say I really dig ‘Oz Diggs Himself Out’. As a fan of the original fourteen canonized books of The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. I came across this book “Oz Diggs Himself Out” and decided to give it a try. I am so glad that I did. It was apparent from the very beginning, the talented author Ron Baxley Jr. created a truly unique masterpiece…” – brand new February 2019 review from author Dennis Vasko II
“Ron Baxley, Jr. has outdone himself! This is a fantastic new take on ‘The Wizard of Oz’ is exciting from beginning to the grand finale. He knows more about the Oz universe than almost everyone else on the planet! I anxiously await Mr. Baxley's next journey to Oz and beyond!” – children’s author Steven Metzger
“Truly a masterpiece. I have never read a story so.. indescribable. It’s wonderful. I truly feel no one understands the oz universe quite like Mr. Baxley. 10/10 very good book.” -- Alex, older young adult female avid reader and actress who has performed in Oz plays
“Cleverly combining lore from Oz, Southern Literature, and elements of current events, Ron created a tale that was delightful to read. Ron is quite knowledgeable about Oz and it was fun to read the extra details of original Oz characters. He's also not afraid to create new characters that fit equally well alongside the Oz Pantheon… During the story, Ron tackles Southern bigotry, racism, Black Lives Matter, and others with ease. He also engages issues such as extreme hoarding in a very humane way. Finally, his characters are all quite believable – if a bit eccentric. And that makes them all the more lovable!” – James Krych, author of the Flight to Oz series
“Ron Baxley's book about the great-x4 grandson of the great and terrible Oz is a book that contains the perfect balance of humor and emotion. Ron's comedic tale introduces those new to Oz with places familiar to those who are well-versed to the Baum books, but these references are given an emotional and relatable tone as the author weaves his own life experiences into the characters, making them life-like and believable.” – Erica Oliviera, Oz fan and author
“Author and fan of the Oz series, Ron Baxley Jr. took to writing and has published several different Oz books among others. However, O.Z. Diggs Himself Out happens to be his best work by far. His creativity is sensational in this fantastic tale about a curse on the Wizard of Oz's male family line set by the Wicked Witch of the West many, many years ago.” – Sera Alexia Starr, Oz fan
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