Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Featured Author: Jarod Kintz

Author Jarod Kintz is here with Virtual Writers, Inc to talk about his humorous novel, The Mandrake Hotel and Resort to violence if necessary. He generously sat down for an interview, and also allowed Tess to talk with Jar Tin Zoo. As well as attending all tour stops, Jarod will be doing a one-hour 
Tweetup, where he will share some of his writing secrets and 
publishing tips on Twitter. He'll be using the hashtag #MandrakeHotel and it will be conducted from @virtualwriters Twitter page. Jarod will also be awarding 80 copies of  
his book to 80 randomly drawn commenters on the blog tour, plus  
another 15 e-copies on the Facebook event page (where there will be some fun challenges and games) and 5 e-copies for the best 
publishing/writing questions asked during his Twitter Chat at 1pm EST  
on 20th July.

About the book:

Right versus wrong, good versus evil, and peanut butter versus jelly—these are just a few of the many eternal struggles this book tackles.

But don’t worry, based on the NFL’s recent concussion scares, all this book’s characters were made to wear helmets before these hard-hitting issues were tackled.

Some central questions will be answered, like:

Who is Dark Jar Tin Zoo, and why is he trying to take over the world?

Will Jackson Jackson Jackson be able to thwart Dark’s diabolical plans? And why does he have a last name for a first and a middle name?

Is Abby Norma Sykes simply too sexy to be featured in such a dramatic thriller such as this book clearly is?

Finally, is it improper to refer to a dwarf as a midget? And what is the shortest height you can be without technically being a dwarf? Is it really as tall as 4’11”? Does that make a person who’s 4’10” the World’s Tallest Dwarf?

This book doesn’t actually discuss such serious social issues as I alluded to in the last paragraph, but it should. I’ll speak to the author immediately, and maybe he’ll address them in the sequel.

Oops! Did I just spoil the surprise? Yes, I most certainly did! Well, there it is—there will be more adventures featuring Dark Jar Tin Zoo, Jackson Jackson Jackson, Abby Norma Sykes, and a smorgasbord of other quirky characters.

This is just the first book of many (unless of course the government poisons me to stop me from exposing their methods of exploitation).

What reviewers are saying:

"Combining absurd, farcical and surreal humour with some more serious and thoughtful musings the book is a firework of clever lines and quirky episodes.

The Mandrake Hotel has a room for everyone, whatever your desires, hobbies and preferences are. It is a madhouse and a world of liberty: Whether you want a room made of sand, one with specific collectibles or a floor full of nudists - the hotel has got it.

I wondered for a long time if the hotel was written as a fantasy world for lazy and hedonistic people (as one reviewer suggested) or as a wider symbol for the world as it is; a statement not unlike the questions of all questions in Douglas Adams book. The world population is exploding, so are we sitting on a powder keg that will go off once the resources run out? Can humanity survive? Are we sane in doing what we are doing?
A lot of ideas are covered in this book at a fast pace, highlighting absurdities and having a good laugh at them.

The author draws you into the book with his wit and once I had handed over total logic to the valet and stopped trying to make sense of every line that was thrown at me - at times very fast paced and confusing - I eased in to the rhythm of the story. It reminds me of the great Eugene Ionesco and Haruki Murakami, without wanting to imply that the style is close to either of them.

'Resort to violence' refers to the plot as it thickens. Our hero of many names and his date Abby decide to fight Dark, the villain from the 13th floor and here a more structured narrative continues.

The book is hugely entertaining, clever and will probably divide the audience into those who appreciate it and those who may not 'get it'. Luckily I was part of the latter group.” Diebus

Interview with Jarod Kintz:

How did you come up with the title of your book?

The title of The Mandrake Hotel and Resort to violence if necessary just sort of occurred to me. I chose The Mandrake because it sounded both luxurious and sinister, and then since it is a humor book, I carried out the title to show the playfulness of it all.

Do you have another job outside of writing?

I do have another job. I work as a concierge in a hotel, though unlike Dark Jar Tin Zoo, I’m not trying to take over the world. But I do like writing love quotes.

How would you describe your book in a tweet? (140 characters or less.)

“The Mandrake Hotel and Resort to violence if necessary” is the most important book since “Two Guys, a Goat, and a Ghost: A Love Story.”

Excellent. How did your cover art come about?

I make all my own covers, and for this one I took a picture of myself wearing a fedora. I pulled the hat low so you couldn’t see my eyes, both to disguise the fact that it was me, and not my alter ego Dark Jar Tin Zoo, but also to add a sense of mystery and shadyness to the portrait. Then I converted the image to grayscale before tinting it red, to give it a menacing, evil look. 

I'm impressed. What’s your favorite line from a book?

“The things you own end up owning you. It's only after you lose everything that you're free to do anything.” –Fight Club

Sophie’s choice: Do you have a favorite of your characters?

I really enjoyed writing Jackson J. Jackson and Abby Norma Sykes, because they got to engage in witty banter. What I really liked is how each character sounded like the other, and both sound exactly like me. Also, did I mention that Dark Jar Tin Zoo is an anagram of my name? It’s true! Jarod Ora Kintz equals Dark Jar Tin Zoo. So every character in the book is based on me, and that’s what makes it great. It’s also what makes it terrible.

You're a funny guy. Tell us one weird thing, one nice thing, and one fact about where you live.

Weird thing: Florida is the retirement capital of the world. Nice thing: I’ve never had so much sex as I have since I started working in a nursing home. Fact: I just made that up—I have no idea if Florida is the retirement capital of the world.

What’s one of your favorite quotes?

“Love, n. A temporary insanity curable by marriage.”-Ambrose Bierce

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Portland, Oregon

What are you working on now?

A new book of love quotes featuring Dora J. Arod called “Love quotes for the ages. And the ageless sages.”

Tess Talks with Dark Jar Tin Zoo:

About Jar Tin Zoo:
The owner of The Mandrake Hotel and Resort is a man called Rot, a billionaire like Bill Gates, only nerdier.

Rot Kugelschreiber isn’t the name he was born with.

No, the name on his birth certificate is Dark Jar Tin Zoo. He chose that
penname because in German it means Red Pen—and a Red Pen is
mightier than a Red Sword, which in turn is mightier than a Rothschild. me, how did you first meet your writer?

My name is Dark Jar Tin Zoo, and I feel like I’ve always known Jarod Ora Kintz. We look alike, we think alike, and we talk alike, though I’m a better lover.

Did you ever think that your life would end up being in a book?

I always knew I’d end up starring in a book. I was born for greatness, wealth, and ultimately to rule the world. It is with a heavy heart that I say I’m going to have to murder billions of people, including the author of this book.

Yikes. Let's make this a short interview, shall we? Tell us about your favorite scene in the book.

My favorite scenes in the book are the ones that feature me. I’m not being narcissistic when I say that I think the writing quality is just better in the sections where I appear, which is astounding because even though the writing is better, it’s still not very good at all. In fact, the whole book is rather dreadful. It’s not nearly as good as my book, “Love Quotes For The Ages. Specifically Ages 19-91.” You know you can trust that when I tell you my book is great it’s an honest assessment, and not a ploy to get book sales, because what do I care about selling more books? I’m a billionaire.

Did you have a hard time convincing your author to write any particular scenes for you?

There was this magnificent sex scene between me and Taylor Swift, but Jarod decided to cut it out of the book because, as he said, “I don’t want her writing a retaliation song dissing you, and have it get played on the airwaves for all of America to ignore.” He has a point. If I’m going to be mocked, I’d prefer if people paid attention.

Do have any secret aspirations that your author doesn’t know about?

Everybody knows I want to take over the world, but not many people know that I want to settle down and have kids—six billion children.

Well, Jar, you certainly are an intriguing character. Thanks for talking to me...I think.
(Tess smiles sweetly, but nervously, and hurries away.)

From the author:

From the ages of 8-18, me and my family moved around a lot. Mostly we would just stretch, but occasionally one of us would actually get up to go to the fridge.

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