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Matthew Tetreault
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Matthew Tétreault is Métis and French-Canadian from Ste. Anne, Manitoba. Hold Your Tongue is his first novel. He lives in Winnipeg.
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This is a gallery of work specially created for #ThinAir2023. Spend time with writers you love, and discover some new favourites! Ceci est une galerie de travaux spécialement créée pour #ThinAir2023. Passez du temps avec des écrivains que vous aimez et découvrez de nouveaux favoris!

Matthew Tétreault is Métis and French-Canadian from Ste. Anne, Manitoba. He is the author of What Happened on the Bloodvein, a dark, but humourous collection of interrelated short stories set in southeast Manitoba. Matt holds a PhD in Métis literature and literary history from the University of Alberta, and he received a Governor General’s Gold Medal for academic excellence. His dissertation traces the literary history of the Red River Métis. In between academic and creative writing projects, Matt plays guitar, video games, and poker for pocket change. He recently moonlighted as the “farm boss” on his in-laws’ ranch in St. Ambroise, where he, his wife, his daughter, and his old cat, Major Tom, landed upon their return to Manitoba. Hold Your Tongue is his first novel. He lives in Winnipeg.

Interview / Entrevue

Two stories here: 1st, when I was 9 or 10 years old, I used to hide all my books from my parents so that I could sneak them under the bedsheets and read into the night after everyone went to bed. The ones I remember most were probably some books from a David Eddings fantasy series. These are the first novel-length books I remember owning. 2nd story: I also remember going to the Ste. Anne library a lot as a kid and taking out all sorts of books. There was one book by Stephen King, Tommyknockers, that I had some trouble with — being a young francophone kid at the time, I didn’t have the greatest English-language vocabulary, and so I went and asked my mom what a certain word meant. Cocksucker. I think it was. Well, she wasn’t impressed! I never did finish that book as she made me return it to the library, but I can’t blame her too much. I was only 11 years old at the time. In any event, that incident taught me a different meaning of hiding your books!

Most difficult question here. I generally don’t like the idea of favorites because it always changes, and depends on context, and taste, and time, and feeling. Also, it’s too difficult to pick only one. Give me some lines by Cormac McCarthy any day.

Definitely a cluttered desk kind of person. I had to buy a bigger desk to accommodate the clutter. It also rises using an electric motor, which is neat. But then things fall, and the printer cable gets caught, and my pens go everywhere, whenever I make the desk go up, so that’s a problem.

I’m what you’d describe as a recovering worse-case scenario thinker. I remember once hearing someone say that if you expect the worse, anything good that happens is a pleasant surprise. I was taken by the notion of going through life being constantly pleasantly surprised and practiced this way of thinking for a long time! The reality, however, is that constantly expecting the worse is exhausting and unhealthy. And moreover, I found myself wholly unprepared for success! There was not just one thing that kept or woke me up at night, but an unending series of concerns that ran the gamut from fighting the squirrels that had moved into the subfloors of my house, to big, recurring, existential crises. Anyways, I’m working on relaxing!

One secret ambition which I will likely never achieve is to record a blues album! Like fingerstyle blues. But I frankly do not have the time to see this through!

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