My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

Beth Kaplan logo

Welcome.

I’m the author of five nonfiction books, long-time teacher of creative writing at the University of Toronto, an editor, and former actor. Lover of Beatles, France, Jon Stewart, cheese, reading, and my garden, among much else.

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Write to me at beth@bethkaplan.ca and I’ll be happy to send you a dedicated, signed copy of Midlife Solo. The audiobook is coming soon.

“A terrific writer, I am so impressed. And what a life!”
ABIGAIL THOMAS, New York Times best-selling author
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Photo by Marion Voysey

News: Beth’s upcoming and recent events:

Upcoming Events

Big news! I have been invited to join the international faculty at the prestigious San Miguel Writers’ Festival in Mexico, February 16-20 2025. My course is entitled Tackling Your Memoir: Seven Essential Steps to Courage and Craft. This five-day festival, in a beautiful, historic town, is packed with workshops, keynote speakers, readings, and panels. Not to mention sunshine, margaritas, and guacamole.

 

In the meantime, I will be speaking about memoir writing at the S. Walter Stewart Library on June 24.

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Midlife Solo Audiobook

The audiobook version of my latest memoir Midlife Solo is out now! It’s read by me and you can listen to it on Audible or iTunes.

My new Substack

Voila my new Substack. It’s called Touchpoints: a writer’s truth, and is about this particular writer at this particular stage of her life — what’s working, what’s not, what she’s trying to accomplish, and what she has given up on. Follow her journey as she struggles to get her words into the world. And even better, see pictures of her adorable cat, who does not appreciate literature.

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Recent Media Appearances

It’s been a busy time here at Bethkaplanwords Inc. I did two long interviews, one with Lisa Lucca, a vivacious writer and radio host in New Mexico, and the other for Vancouver book podcaster Joseph Planta, who reads deeply and asks great questions. On a visit to Ben McNally Books, Rupert McNally asked, on the spot, to tape a brief video of me speaking about my book and then about a favourite writer of my choosing; you’ll see who I chose. A third interview, conducted by my good friend Christopher Moore about putting together a memoir-in-essays, appeared recently on the Creative Nonfiction Collective’s website. Wish I could go to Barbados now and put my feet up, but no — onward.

Midlife Solo named Ben McNally Books bestseller

Midlife Solo was one of Ben McNally Books’ top ten bestsellers from November, alongside some other great books. Thank you to everyone who has read Midlife Solo so far and supported a wonderful local independent bookstore in the process.

Books

Midlife Solo: Writing through chaos to find my place in the world

A single mother starting afresh in her forties struggles to come to terms with the messy complications of middle age.

An extraordinary life, written with tremendous heart, insight and humour.
—GLENDA MACFARLANE, Book Review Columnist, The Bridge newspaper

Loose Woman: My Odyssey from Lost to Found

To her own amazement, a mixed-up young actress finds herself in an extraordinary situation in the south of France and is changed forever.

I loved reading this hugely enjoyable book, page-turning and honest. And it’s funny!
—DAME HARRIET WALTER, one of Britain’s foremost actresses

True to Life: 50 steps to help you tell your story

A succinct, illuminating guide to writing memoir or anything else.

This book is fabulous: a user-friendly, down-to-earth accessible guide to writing.
—WENDY LITNER, Huff Post and TV writer, lawyer, former writing student

All My Loving: Coming of age with Paul McCartney in Paris

A teenaged girl spending a lonely year in Paris in 1964 keeps herself company with hilarious fantasies about the Beatles as she struggles to understand the world.

A lively, evocative, and moving memoir of a period, a girl, and a family.
—VALERIE HAUCH, former Toronto Star staff reporter

Finding the Jewish Shakespeare: The Life and Legacy of Jacob Gordin

A biography of the author’s great-grandfather, a titanic figure in the turbulent, mesmerizing world of the Yiddish theatre on the Lower East Side of New York.

This is a witty, shrewd and elegant book which tells a story of vital importance.
—TONY KUSHNER, Pulitzer, Emmy, and Tony award winning playwright and screenwriter

Teaching and Coaching

I’ve been teaching memoir and personal essay writing for thirty years at two Toronto universities. In 2012 I was given the Excellence in Teaching Award at the University of Toronto.

Born to Blog

Keith Turnbull 1944-2024

https://www.dignitymemorial.com/obituaries/montreal-qc/keith-turnbull-11847291 An extraordinary Canadian died last Sunday. Keith Turnbull, director, producer, translator, educator, was indefatigable in his support for theatre

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D Day

So moving. A CBC Ideas program for D Day: Harry, a Canadian soldier who wrote letters home about the war

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