My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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meeting in writing class

You never know what will happen in a writing class. Mine are both well underway and already full of fascinating lives and intersections, including, in one, two Caucasians in their seventies who grew up and lived for decades as adults in the same small African country and then emigrated to Toronto, sitting side by side in class though they’ve never met; their first pieces of writing were both full of bonobos, puff adders and leopards. Even without that kind of synchronicity, students often find soulmates in class, people who’ve been through remarkably similar experiences.

But nothing beats this story, of two women, strangers in a New York creative writing class who discovered that they’re sisters!

Former student Nancy Figueroa, who’s had several pieces in the Globe since taking my class, including one about taking my class, had another in yesterday, just in time for the vitriolic debate in Ontario on sex ed. Very entertaining, brava, Nancy. I wrote to congratulate her, and she wrote back that many of the students in her 2012 class are still meeting regularly as a writer’s group. She said, Please know we talk fondly of you at our meetings and often wonder, “What would Beth say?” Thanks for all you taught us.
Glad the class worked for you. Even if you didn’t find a long-lost sister.

Another technological hurdle overcome today – I’ve been dealing with Rogers, my internet and cable company, and yesterday they generously offered me a free PVR. Is that what it’s called? I’ve heard of them but had no idea how they work. Well, as of today, not only do I have a brand new modem delivering ultra-fast internet – no more waiting 20 long seconds, now things appear in only 10! –  but I have a PVR. The nice Rogers man slowly explained how it works, and I took notes. So this means you can tape and watch later? How exciting. Welcome to 2015, ancient Granny dear.

It’s chilly and grey, so much so at night so that I’ve been covering the fragile plants on the deck, the jasmine and gardenia and bougainvillea, with a sheet to protect them. My babies! So far they’ve survived, but it’s so chilly, nothing can be planted, and it’s going to continue cold all through next week. Only a tiny bit of panic about the Cabbagetown Garden Tour on June 7, on which my so far chaotic, bald, unplanted garden will appear this year.

No panic either about the next So True event, Sunday May 31, though we are still a few readers short. Readers will come through and it will be stellar, as always.

Last night, the latest Word Sisters dinner. A group of women involved in words – editors, book publicists, agents, a lawyer and a legal advisor to writers, and your humble correspondent, gather regularly for gossip, food, wine and mutual support. This time our friend Meg is departing for the States, so we gathered to send her off in style, with much Champagne. Unfortunately your humble etc. liked the Champagne, and the subsequent rouge, a bit too much. Suffering today. Worth it.

There’s a mouse in my kitchen – I encountered it skittering across the floor the other day. When it saw my startled face, it ran under the fridge. What to do? At least it’s not a puff adder or a leopard. My handyman brought some poison – though I haven’t been able to use it yet.



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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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