Goldberg in The Atlantic

Friedman is 45 years old. A retired IBM programmer in Austin, Texas, he lives in an apartment playing the stock market and making collages from pictures cut out of magazines. He is also the main character in Matthew Goldberg’s latest novel. Goldberg teaches creative writing in S&T’s English and technical communication department.


A short story adapted from the novel, “Friedman in the Dark,” was published in the October 2010 issue of The Atlantic. In the story, Friedman works on his relationship with a 22-year-old girl and deals with his mother, who is bipolar and institutionalized. After she escapes from her residential facility, he has to find her and decide what to do with her.
Friedman has no first name in either the novel or the short story. “I didn’t want to think of him that way,” Goldberg says.
Goldberg, who is in his second year of teaching at S&T, worked at IBM in Austin for two years before following his passion to write. He says the novel isn’t autobiographical.
“Friedman isn’t based on any one person, but it could be anyone,” he says. “They seem to share a sense of claustrophobia and find it tough to open up to the world.”
Goldberg holds a bachelor of science degree in electrical and biomedical engineering from Duke University and a master of fine arts in creative writing from the University of Arkansas. He feels his background in engineering makes him a good fit to teach composition to S&T undergraduates.
“I can talk about the importance of writing to engineering students,” Goldberg says. “In every job I had before I started teaching, writing was important — evaluations, presentations. When you’re writing your own performance evaluation, it helps to have good writing skills.”
Goldberg is currently working on his second novel and shopping for a publisher for the first. He tries to write three hours a day.
“I get caught up in it,” he says. “Some days it happens, other days it doesn’t.” But having the discipline to try helps his creativity. “At least it’s an address where inspiration can find me.”

Around the Puck

Q&A: Miners got game

What was the most memorable sports team during your time on campus? As part of his research for the S&T 150th history book, Larry Gragg, Curators’ Distinguished Teaching Professor emeritus of history and political science, asked you to share your memories. Here are a few of your answers.

[Read More...]

Honoring new academy members

In October, 12 alumni and friends were inducted into Missouri S&T academies. Academy membership recognizes careers of distinction and invites members to share their wisdom, influence and resources with faculty and students. Some academies hold induction ceremonies in the fall, others in the spring.

[Read More...]

Boosting cyber-physical security

A wide array of complex systems that rely on computers — from public water supply systems and electric grids to chemical plants and self-driving vehicles — increasingly come under not just digital but physical attacks. Bruce McMillin, professor and interim chair of computer science at Missouri S&T, is looking to change that by developing stronger safeguards […]

[Read More...]

MXene discovery could improve energy storage

In spite of their diminutive size, 2-D titanium carbide materials known as MXenes are “quite reactive” to water, a discovery S&T researchers say could have implications for energy storage and harvesting applications such as batteries, supercapacitors and beyond. Their findings were published in 2018 in the American Chemical Society journal Inorganic Chemistry.

[Read More...]

A faster charge for electric vehicles

One drawback of electric vehicles (EVs) is the time it takes to charge them. But what if you could plug in your EV and fully charge it as quickly as it takes to fill up a conventional car with gasoline? Missouri S&T researchers, in collaboration with three private companies, are working to make speedy charging […]

[Read More...]