As a writer, it’s super nice to know when someone really gets what you’re trying to do. Author Chris Willrich has some supremely nice things to say about King of Shards on twitter, which I’ve unrolled here.
KING OF SHARDS by @mattkressel is one of the most ambitious fantasy novels out there. By ambitious I don’t mean in terms of page count or numbers of characters or even epic sweep (though it does have a mind-bogglingly large scale.) Rather, it’s gutsy in its conceptual reach …
Hope you and yours had a happy New Year’s! We spent ours with close friends, ringing in the new year with much cheer and cheese. (And perhaps it was the cheese that prevented me from having too bad of a hangover the next morning.)
If you were busy over the holiday break, you might have missed the Geeks Guide to the Galaxy episode I participated in, reviewing the SyFy TV series Nightflyers, based on the George R.R. Martin novella of the same name. Erin Lindsey, Andrea Kail, myself, and host David Barr Kirtley discuss the show. And needless to say, we have opinions.
Here’s a quote from yours truly:
“The only way they can communicate with the [aliens] is by bringing along a psychic, which sounds perfectly reasonable, except the psychic is literally a psychopath—at least that’s how they present him from the get-go. And I’m like, ‘Why would they bring this completely unstable psychopath with them on this journey which is the last best hope of humanity? Can’t they find a more stable psychic?’ I didn’t quite get that. And then they bring him on board in this giant cage, and he looks through the window and messes with someone’s brain, so it’s like, ‘Well, what’s the point of the cage then?’ I don’t understand why they’re even locking him away if he can literally just ‘think outside the box’ and fry someone’s brain.”
In the latest episode of the venerable Geeks Guide to the Galaxy podcast, I join Rajan Khanna, Erin Lindsey, and host David Barr Kirtley to discuss Solo: A Star Wars Story.
The new Star Wars movie Solo is an enjoyable action-comedy, but it fails in one important area: really exploring how Han Solo developed his cynical, jaded attitude. The movie also mostly skips over Han’s time as an Imperial soldier, which fantasy author Erin Lindsey feels is a big mistake.
“I wanted to see Han learning to become a pilot, going up against the norms and expectations of the military, deciding it wasn’t for him—or it deciding he was not for them,” Lindsey says in Episode 312 of the Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast.
Science fiction author Matthew Kressel agrees, noting that a brief sequence of trench warfare is one of the movie’s most interesting set pieces. “We could show Han in the trenches,” he says, “seeing how ugly war is, and maybe coming out of that a little bit darker, a little bit world-weary.”
Matthew Kressel is a three-time Nebula Award finalist, a World Fantasy Award finalist, and a Eugie Award Finalist. He has written dozens of short stories, a few novels, and is the co-host of the Fantastic Fiction at KGB reading series in Manhattan. He is also the creator of the Moksha submissions system.