M a r t i n K i h n
will be with you a moment.
Martin Kihn is a writer, digital marketer, dog lover, balletomane and spiritual athlete. He was born in Zambia, grew up in suburban Michigan, has a BA in Theater Studies from Yale and an MBA from Columbia Business School. His articles have appeared in New York, the New York Times, GQ, Us, Details, Cosmopolitan and Forbes, among many others, and he was on the staff of Spy, Forbes, New York and Vibe. Until recently, most of his writing could be called satirical or snarky, meticulously researched and office-based.
His third book, the mind-blowing memoir "Bad Dog: A Love Story," changes everything.
In the late 1990's, Kihn was Head Writer for the popular television program "Pop-Up Video" on MTV Networks and was nominated for an Emmy for Writing. He lost to "Win Ben Stein's Money," decided to quit writing and got into business school. Ironically enough, the tragicomic world of American business, where everybody seemed to be speaking an impressive language that was not quite English, and not quite clear, provided him with a whole new vein of source material, and his writing career really took off.
Kihn's first book was a humorous expose of the consulting industry called "House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch and Then Tell You the Time" (Grand Central 2005), based on the three years he spent working for a large consultancy. The Economist said "a more entertaining book about business is unlikely to appear for a long time," and Salon.com called it "exceedingly smart and funny," echoing Publishers Weekly's reviewer, who declared the book "highly intelligent and deeply funny."
Former co-workers and pinheaded career consultants were less amused, however, spamming Amazon.com with one-star reviews and all but sabotaging the book's chances in the marketplace.
Enraged but unbroken, Kihn reemerged a few years later with a grotesquely satirical stunt-memoir called "A$$hole: How I Got Rich & Happy By Not Giving a Damn About Anyone" (Broadway Books 2008). The premise of this reality TV-type firebomb was that a guy who is too nice to get ahead in business (aka Marty) decides systematically to turn himself into a pricktard and reap the rewards. Film rights were sold to Warner Brothers, where it is in development, and Booklist raved "Kihn's got a great ear for dialogue - and a comedic sense worthy of Second City."
For reasons that elude the Author, "A$$hole" became a publishing phenomenon in Germany and Austria, sitting for months on the Der Spiegel bestseller list and causing his German publisher to proclaim him "the David Hasselhoff of satirical non-fiction." Notes from his legion of German fans lead some to suspect Kihn's gossamer irony was lost in translation.
Meanwhile, "House of Lies" was picked up by Showtime and debuted as a series on Jan. 8th, 2012. Don Cheadle plays a character named Marty Kaan, a cut-throat management consultant loosely based on Marty Kihn. Kristen Bell is the object of his sexual harassment. It is a Sunday-night hit and was renewed for a second season. In addition, the ultratalented Darlene Hunt, creator of Showtime's "The Big C," is developing "Bad Dog (A Love Story)" for NBC.
Kihn is married to the singer-songwriter Julia Douglass. Her most recent projects include a series of brilliant one-minute animated songs about cooking called ChefDoReMi.com. After many years living and working in New York City, the couple moved to Minneapolis, where Kihn works as a digital marketer for a well-known advertising agency.
"Bad Dog: A Love Story," marks the emergence of a mature writer at the height of his powers. At its heart is an intensely charismatic, terribly-behaved 90-pound Bernese mountain dog named Hola. After a shattering personal crisis, Kihn decides to train Hola and together they earn their Canine Good Citizen certification from the American Kennel Club. It's a journey of redemption, as together man and dog reclaim their lives by working toward a common goal.
You can able to follow Hola's antics on Facebook (Facebook.com / baddogbook) and Twitter (@BadDogTweets). For now, Hola and her companion can guarantee this: There won't be a dry eye in the kennel. xo