Ruby Roth is an acclaimed activist, artist, former teacher, and author whose vegan children’s books have been featured in The Huffington Post, Change.org, and Glamour.
A passionate advocate for creating a more sustainable world, Ruby has taken her vegan food philosophy to major media outlets such as The Today Show, FOX, ABC, and CNN — and as a plant-based family ourselves, we couldn’t be more grateful for her work.
Ruby has been vegan since 2003, and she first discovered children’s interest in veganism while teaching art at an elementary school. This inspired her to write her book, “That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals” in 2009. “That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals” was the first non-fiction book of its kind and addresses issues such as factory farming and the effect that meat-eating has on the environment. Most importantly, “That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals” explains the emotional lives of animals and gives families an opportunity to sit down and open up a dialogue about sustainable living.
Since the runaway success of “That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals” Ruby has created five more beautifully illustrated children’s books, including; Vegan Is Love, V Is for Vegan, The Help Yourself Cookbook for Kids and the soon to be released, Bad Day. We love this collection of books, not only because it has helped countless parents educate and encourage their children to find a holistic approach to healthy living, but also because it stresses the power of good habits and their ability to change the world for the better.
We got to chat to Ruby about how growing up in a family of holocaust survivors influenced her childhood, what made her want to create such an illuminating series of children’s books, and how she manages the inevitable artistic blocks that all creatives face.
Listen to the Full Interview with Ruby Roth
The Lasting Effects of Familial Trauma
Ruby grew up in a family of Jewish holocaust survivors, and she was candid with us about how this shaped her childhood. As someone who’s grandparents were also holocaust survivors, I can relate to Ruby’s experience. We shared with each other how our families history permeated our psyche as children, from being proud of our collective resilience to having a deep-seated fear of loss and suffering.
“There’s a little bit of an undercurrent, and I wouldn’t know otherwise, where it came from, that things could get taken away, or that something bad could happen. You know, there are studies now in, in the field of neuroscience that shows how fear is passed down through generations — even if the children didn’t experience the cause of the fear.”
The Importance of Overcoming Resistance
Almost every artist at some point experiences a creative block, it’s just part of the process, and can be difficult to navigate out of without conscious effort. Ruby explained to us that she views this resistance and lack of inspiration as something to overcome. One tool she uses to help her stay on track of her “resistance” is to create lists of tasks she needs to complete and to simply remind herself that she is only one person, and there is only so much she can achieve each day.
“There is constant resistance always, in me. And I think in every artist’s and creative mind, that is always something that I am overcoming all the time, sometimes it’s every day, sometimes multiple times a day. “
All You Can Do Is Try
Does anyone truly have everything in life figured out? Whether you’re a creative pinpointing your ideal medium and niche, or a parent helping your kids to navigate childhood, most of us are just trying our best. Ruby explained to us the importance of experimenting with your business model and putting yourself out there — even if you aren’t sure what the end result might be.
“We are all trying, nobody knows. Even the even top-level people are still experimenting, and aren’t sure what’s going to work and what isn’t. And I often tell myself, you haven’t even begun to try. You know, when I’m feeling down or whatever, there are so many things to try and so many avenues to explore that we really cannot let ourselves go down any hole of like, ‘Oh, it’s not working. It’s not working.’ — You haven’t even tried, you know?”
To hear the rest of our conversation with Ruby, click the player below and prepare to be inspired! And if you’re interested in purchasing any of Ruby’s wonderful books, we’ve linked them below for your convenience.
Ruby's newest book, “Bad Day' – She is the author and illustrator
Links & Resources
- Ruby's newest children's book: Bad Day
- That's Why We Don't Eat Animals: A Book About Vegans, Vegetarians, and All Living Things
- V Is for Vegan: The ABCs of Being Kind
- Vegan Is Love: Having Heart and Taking Action
- The Help Yourself Cookbook for Kids: 60 Easy Plant-Based Recipes Kids Can Make to Stay Healthy and Save the Earth
Connect With Ruby Roth
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- Om Mamas Doulas Website
- Sun Dreams Productions Website