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learning to say no – but yes to Simu Liu

I’ve just done something extremely hard – and yet it was not. I just turned down an offer to publish my essay book. Believe me, it was done with a great deal of agonizing. The publishing house publishes good writers, works fast, and would get the book into American and European as well as Canadian markets. But there are very good reasons for saying no. Back to the drawing board. 


I also sent a 9,500 word essay about a relative to another relative, who wrote back, “Read it but feel it’s almost too much information..I was not totally captivated and lost my attention as I continued to read it…cant tell you why but that’s my honest take.”

I know from this blog you think the life of a writer is one of ease, fame, wealth, and lavish helpings of caviar and adulation. I’m letting you know this is often not the case. At least, not in MY case. 

And yet, what do I have to complain about? Nothing. It’s spring. Yesterday, raging heat like July, today, cool and wet like April. I just watched a female sparrow being mounted by first one and then another male, quick, in, out, fly away, doesn’t look like fun. Unlike the cardinals, so devoted to each other — last night when they came to drink on the deck, he waited behind her, keeping an eye for danger, while she sipped, and then it was his turn. Then I saw the season’s first hummingbird, and there, high up in a neighbour’s tree, a clump of fur which turned out to be a big raccoon sleeping in the heat. Yesterday was 26 feeling like 31 degrees. I felt like sleeping in a tree too. 

I am filled with wonder and gratefulness for the garden — the miracle that a month ago it was dead and brown and now is bursting with beautiful green life, and home to so many creatures. 

And last night, going to bed, I caught sight of the moon. Half was dark, the other half glowing orange, with shadow gradually encroaching — the super flower blood moon eclipse. I always think about primitive peoples, how confused and frightened they must have been seeing the moon disappear. And then come back. 

I watched a bit of the Junos and for once was mightily impressed. Simu Liu is not only adorable, he’s the perfect host, especially with his paean to Canada that ended Canada is a place where the government is also our drug dealer and we’re into snowboarding not waterboarding and where a woman always has the right to choose.

Imagine, daring to say that at an American event! Speaking of which, more massacres there. How to watch a civilization hurtle into self-destruction? Everyone I speak to has given up on the States. Can it be fixed or redeemed? I don’t think so. 

I put a great deal of the blame at the feet of Rupert Murdoch. Much much blame. 

For those of you following the saga of my daughter’s dying cat — still vibrant but vomiting regularly, probably from an internal cancer — Anna had decided today was the day to take Naan to the vet. She’d done a day of goodbyes, prepared her grief-stricken sons. This morning, Ben had a fever, so the vet visit was cancelled. “She’s cashed in another of her 10,000 lives!” Anna wrote.

Some of us are here to see another day. Some of us are not. Bandit, who came to visit this weekend with his favourite stuffy, and made a huge mess everywhere, is.



2 Responses to “learning to say no – but yes to Simu Liu”

  1. Anonymous says:

    You'll know the right publishing offer when it comes along. (Sometimes it's not the first!) And then we get to read them! Lucky us.

  2. beth says:

    Thank you! Stay tuned. You'll be the first to know when the right offer comes.

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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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