My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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cue the violins

While we’re on the disappointment trail, my friends, might as well add another one.  I was happily drinking my coffee while reading the Globe and Mail Book Review this morning when I froze – there was the announcement of the winners of the Canadian Jewish Book Awards.  My book had been submitted for consideration and I’d been fantasising about the possibility … 

Anyway, there you go.  There were two potential categories for my book; one was won by a well-known academic for her latest work, but the other winner was a book published, like mine, by Syracuse University Press, about a Yiddish poet who lived at the same time as my great-grandfather. So I can’t even claim that it was the press or the obscure subject at fault.  
Of course, this brought up all my other times of rejection and failure, a litany like sour breath on the back of my neck.  I feel as if my only and beloved offspring has been left off the invitation list of a very exclusive party.  What’s wrong with my child? I want to cry. Why don’t you appreciate her like I do? 

But you know, that child is doing fine.  Prizes matter, yes – readers more readily buy books that have won a prize.  Luckily, however, they will also buy books that haven’t.  My publisher just sent the information that the book was chosen as one of the “Books to read this month” by a New York magazine.  It’s the best book I could write and that’s that.  All that matters now for me is to move right along to the next book. 
My sincere congratulations to the winners.  We all need every boost we can get in this business. Because in the end, if we write for prizes, we’re lost.  We write because we have to write.  And so, if you’ll excuse me, I have work to do.  
But first, a very large and comforting snack involving chocolate.  



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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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