By nmurray, Jun 23 2020 07:22AM
Welcome Jordan, glad you could make it . Please tell everyone about yourself and about your debut novel Zoon Garden published during lockdown. These are interesting times for authors.
1. Who are you and what is your background?
Jordan O’Donnell, 27, live in Richmond, VA, D1 wrestler, former-FBI employee turned novelist.
2. Why do you write?
Ideas are the backbone of humanity. A building, religion, sport, car—at the root, everything is an idea. Writing is the most lucid form of expressing ideas. It lasts forever, and if done well enough can retain relevance for thousands of years. I feel there is no greater calling than to analyze your society and write about it for posterity.
3. Who are your greatest influences?
Dostoevsky influenced my ideas and the intentions of my work. He is the psychologist of human souls. No one knew the human condition better than him, which made his characters almost more real than real people.
Similarly I write works that analyze religion, philosophy, and human condition through a compelling story.
Hemingway and Orwell most impacted my style. I like simpler, shorter prose that packs a punch.
Gabriel Garcia-Marquez and John Steinbeck influenced my lifestyle. Both of them abandoned everything in there 30s and 40s to pursue writing. They lived in poverty, had incredible hardship, and still persevered. They motivated me to commit to the true artist’s pursuit, including the uncertainty, poverty, lack of comfort, etc.
4. What have you written and what are you working on now?
My debut novel Zoon Garden released on May 22, 2020. It is a political allegory in the vein of Animal Farm. Modern America is portrayed as a zoo ruled by two tribes: the wolves and the sheep who slowly accidentally destroy the zoo.
I started my second novel, a piece about an entirely unrelated topic. However the vast majority of my focus is dedicated to promoting Zoon Garden amidst this divided and uncertain time in American history.
5. How do you market your books and do your promotion methods work?
I take an unprecedented approach to book marketing. I used the money saved from the FBI to buy a school bus and two travel trailers. I converted them, hired 21 college interns with skills in publicity, social media, marketing, publicity, computer science, videography, etc. In a week we will set off on an 8 week promotion tour all around the nation, taking the book straight to the people grass roots style. We will also be starting a podcast, as well as shooting a Netflix quality documentary.
The success of the tactic is yet to be determined, but we anticipate it will turn a lot of heads and be very successful.
6. Where can readers find your book for sale?
Zoon Garden is available on Amazon in eBook, Hardback and paperback. The audiobook version will be available on June 18th. https://www.amazon.com/Zoon-Garden-Decline-Jordan-ODonnell/dp/1734962801/
The ebook is also available on Kobo. If you’re an Indie book store, it is available through Ingram.
Thank you so much. Animal Farm has been a huge influence on my work too. When I get through my 150 book reading pile, I would be interested to read your new book.
All the best for the future and keep in touch.