art, literature, math, other, writing

New Site and Future Plans

We're closing in on September, and since my brain still thinks of Sept-Sept as "the proper year" from all that time in academia, I got to thinking about my plans for this upcoming year. I decided it no longer made sense to have my internet presence so spread out. I originally created "matthewwardbooks.com" as the… Continue reading New Site and Future Plans

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literature, writing

Year of Mysteries, Part 5: Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow

I've put off writing about this book, because I was left pretty conflicted on how to feel about it. As a mystery, it was deeply unsatisfying. But as a novel, it scratched some itches I didn't know I had. The book drew me in quickly. It starts with the death of a boy. It looks… Continue reading Year of Mysteries, Part 5: Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow

art, film, literature, physics, writing

Why It Works: Primer

A series in which I oversimplify one concept from a work of literature to make you a better writer. Time travel sucks as a genre. It's a bit of a pet peeve of mine. Yes, the whole genre. Everyone knows about the grandfather paradox: if you travel back in time and kill your grandfather before… Continue reading Why It Works: Primer

art, literature, writing

On Doubts and Taste in Books

Doubt is a good thing when you're a writer. It's an important part of everyone's journey. I don't want to speak in absolutes, but if you've never doubted the greatness of your work, then it's probably not very good. You probably haven't grown much as a writer. Doubt comes in waves. It happens a lot… Continue reading On Doubts and Taste in Books

literature

Year of Mystery Novels, Part 3: Murder on the Orient Express

As I pointed out when I started the series, I was woefully ignorant of the mystery genre. I picked up Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express from the library. Something surprised me about it. It was far along in a row of books that all looked the same. This is actually the 10th book in the… Continue reading Year of Mystery Novels, Part 3: Murder on the Orient Express

art, literature

Specter of the Spheres: Prologue

It's probably not fair to spend years on this blog teaching writing and prose techniques and critiquing other novels without ever showing my own. Here's the prologue from my newest book for your enjoyment. Specter of the Spheres Prologue Priestess Elienne squinted toward the southern horizon. The blood moon hung low, and time was short… Continue reading Specter of the Spheres: Prologue