Ruth A. Rouff is a poet, writer, and educator. She has published a novel, two biographies, numerous poems, and a book of collected poems and stories, along with freelance articles, and has taught in Philadelphia PA and Camden NJ. Her work has appeared in various literary journals, including Exquisite Corpse, Philadelphia Poets, and Wilde. She is featured at poetry readings around the metro Philadelphia area. She has also written two young-adult nonfiction books: Ida B. Wells: A Woman of Courage and Great Moments in Sports.
Ruth was raised in southern New Jersey, near Philadelphia, and earned a BA in English from Vassar College and an MS in Education from Saint Joseph's University. She has worked at a variety of jobs, including retail management, publishing, editing, and teaching in Philadelphia public schools and in adult-education programs.
New Biography: Lone Star
The life of Babe Didrikson reimagined.
As a poor kid growing up in Beaumont Texas, brash, scrappy Babe Didrikson dreams of becoming a great athlete. She is on her way to fulfilling her dream when in 1932 she wins five track and field events at the AAU National Championships and then medals three times at the 1932 Olympic Games.
Babe is suddenly a celebrated athlete, but the ways she can make a living as a female athlete are limited in the 1930s. Female athletes are enough of a novelty without adding her brash, out-spoken personality and strong and agile physicality that is anything but feminine. She has already had to put up with hostile whisperings denigrating her as being too raw, too masculine to be an acceptable role model for girls.
Babe finally finds her place in sports history when she discovers golf and eventually dominates both the amateur and professional tournaments with her victories and her winning personality. In 1950, she's voted the "Greatest Female Athlete of the First Half of the Century" by the Associated Press.
Ruth Rouff presents a reimagining of the life of Babe Didrikson Zaharias that delves into her lesbian desires behind the heterosexual public image she so carefully crafted. Babe Didrikson's story of self-doubt, longing, and overcoming challenges resonates today as many of us face the same societal prejudices and expectations as we continue the fight for equality for everyone.
Published by Blink Books. Available at Amazon and other bookstores.
Poetry and Stories
Where is Pagan Heaven? It's all around us. In our unceasing fascination with a movie star who died over half a century ago. In an inner-city youth who muses over the meaning of the word philosophy. In a statue of the Virgin Mary sitting atop a Coke machine. On a street where Walt Whitman once lived. On a lesbian-only cruise ship off the coast of Alaska. In an unusual melding of narrative poetry and spot-on prose, Pagan Heaven offers a wry take on the absurdities of modern American life, all the while celebrating human uniqueness whenever, wherever, and however it's found.
Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other bookstores.