My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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love from flagrant lunatics

I’ve just discovered a book I must read. It’s called “Reality Hunger” by David Shields, a manifesto about literature. Shields says, as I have for years, that he can no longer read novels, that he isn’t interested in imagined lives but in real ones, in new kinds of literature that break old formats and play with truth. At least, I think that’s what he’s saying, from the reviews and excerpts I’ve just read on-line. Will now search for the book to see if I’ve got it right. Music to my non-fiction-loving ears.

And more music, these days – I’ve been receiving words of praise, which echo merrily in the ears. Several people have expressed enthusiasm about the blog book. One fan, who has read it 3 times, said it’s the “one of the nicest, warmest, funniest books I’ve ever read.” Yes, it’s my mother so not the most objective of critics, but still, she didn’t say that about “Finding the Jewish Shakespeare.” (She did, however, express some concern about a passage in which I speak of my family as “a bunch of flagrant lunatics.” “Why flagrant?” she asked with indignation.
“What family isn’t a bunch of flagrant lunatics?” I replied, and she had to agree.)
But today, a new friend emailed to say she and her husband were driving home from their holiday in a blinding rainstorm, so she read the book aloud, and it kept them good company for hours. “What a fabulous treat of musings, adventures, misadventures, and intimate insights about life,” she said. Talk about music!
And a student who was at the writing workshop on Sunday wrote to say, “The whole day was such a pleasure – the joy of meeting interesting and diverse people, the chance to exchange words with and listen to the wonderful, funny, philosophical, wise and real Wayson Choy.

Between the two of you and all the ideas and knowledge imparted, I left with my head (tired) happily spinning! In addition, a perfect and tasty spread, with a glass of wine at the end – a delightful way to close off. You know I’m in, if you ever do other workshops.”
Wonderful to hear, things like this. Especially on a day when I read in the “Star” that Rob Ford is leading in the polls. I’ll just go back to reading nice things about me.
Two very different women friends today, one a widow and one married, both musing about where to live, now that their nests are empty. Many of us are having this discussion, trying to figure out the next chapter. At least I know what I want to do for the rest of my life. There’s no looming retirement; instead, I hope, more writing, editing and teaching work than ever. I hope. But where I do these things is not so sure.
Watched “A Hard Day’s Night” yesterday, for the twelfth time probably, not a few of those times as an adult. It’s just a wonderful film, even if you’re not a Beatlemaniac, but if you are, the music and the personalities are luscious. What’s so clear is the sheer joy they are taking in their new-found fame, in the music and in each other. John Lennon positively beams his way through this film. How sad that joy was lost, but not surprising, after the madness they all went through together.
Over and out, on Tuesday.



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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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