Ruby Bayan is a freelance writer who likes to share her simple joys.
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- Ronald Bayan

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    Ruby Bayan


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by Ruby Bayan

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Notes from My Guests


I originally found the Inspiration/Motivation through Suite101 and so, had not been to your Web site. It's beautiful! I love your layout, your articles, the up beat feeling, your son's column. Really, I can't say enough about it. If you were ever at all interested, I'd be honored to feature any of your motivational/inspirational pieces on

... Your site really shines, both in originality and in quality. Besides the wonderful content (the articles you wrote!) the design and layout are wonderful.

-- Mark Farmer


I've really enjoyed reading your articles. You have a distinct voice that will add to the diversity of our site. . . .
After reading all of your material, I feel honored that you've allowed this personal view of yourself. You are inspiring, indeed.

-- Angie Parkin
The Foundation for a Better Life

Foundation for a Better Life
This non-profit, non-commercial organization is carrying many of my inspirational stories. Visit them for ways to help make the world a better place for everyone. Then pass it on.


Just wanted to let you know you've got a really well done website here. I just made my own site and it is still being developed, yours is really nice with all kinds of stuff and good links and info. Bravo!

-- Max Hartshorne
Managing Editor
Transitions Abroad


Very impressive!! I knew you were talented from the first time I read one of your articles. And your photo is beautiful. Good luck with everything.

-- Loraine Page
Link-Up NewsMagazine
Homepage: RhapsodyofWords

Hi Ruby;

I've been wandering around on your site and enjoying it thoroughly, and I must tell you that you've done a remarkable job! I can't imagine the amount of time you've devoted to this effort, hats off to you for the dedication.

I've enjoyed the site so much that I would really like to add a link to my own site. I'm in the process of creating a page of links that would be helpful to my writers, and if I could add a link to your site it would really start things off on the right foot.

-- Amanda Swanson

Hello Ruby,

During my travels on the internet it was my pleasure to come across your site. My compliments on a job well done. I am impressed by your accomplishments. May your talent bring you great success.

I am Micheal Teal. I am a Psychic / Spiritual Advisor in Canada. I enjoyed perusing your pages. I wish you great joy and prosperity. You have many gifts.

May all your days be happy ones.

Forever in Peace
-- Micheal Teal
The Ancient One

Hi Ruby!

I also wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your Our Simple Joys site. I've been thinking about doing something like that myself. It's good inspiration to do that. ... It really is an attractive site and you have some great writing on it. :-)

-- Maria Christensen

hiya ruby,

well, what can i say. wow! lots of stuff to go through - like finding a cozy corner on a bookshop where the proprietor lets you wander around endlessly and leaf through any book to your heart's content. without obliging you to buy, of course.

i'll be back for sure and spend more quality time. and if i could just configure this darn computer to play crossroads as well, hey, it'd be nirvana.

-- al manlangit

Your guestbook function doesn't work! Fix it fast or you'll be missing lots and lots of well-deserved positive comments.

I'd be lying to my teeth if I say your site sucks. In fact I'm envious. Must be the best site I've visited ever since. The presentation is visually cool. The topical variety is excellent. But it is the intellectual depth that invited me to stay for as long as possible. Congratulations! I'd be back - of course!

-- Mark Ibanez

"What's New in This Writer's Life"

by Ruby Bayan

12/12/03 - Got another request to post a call for submissions:

Dear Ruby,

I am the co-author of "Chicken Soup for the Traveler's Soul" and "Chicken Soup for the Nature Lover's Soul," and I am now working on a new book entitled "Doing Good for Goodness' Sake" (not part of the Chicken Soup for the Soul" series). I was wondering if you could help spread the word regarding our Call for Submissions (as below) to your network of writers, colleagues and anyone else that you feel might be interested.

I'd sure appreciate whatever you could do. Given the subject matter, it seems like people might be particularly inspired during this holiday season.

Warm regards,
Steve Zikman, Editor
"Doing Good for Goodness' Sake"


Steve Zikman, co-author of "Chicken Soup for the Traveler's Soul" and "Chicken Soup for the Nature Lover's Soul" is seeking submissions for inclusion in a new collection of stories entitled "Doing Good for Goodness' Sake." The book consists of heartwarming true stories about ordinary people making a difference in the everyday lives of others.

A "Doing Good for Goodness' Sake" story is an inspirational, true story with a beginning, middle and an end. The story should illustrate how each of us can reach out and help someone else unconditionally.

Chapter headings and topics include:
-Good Samaritans (helping strangers)
-Causes Close to the Heart
-Daring Rescues
-A Sense of Community
-Reaching Out to Those in Far-Off Places
-Through the Eyes of a Child
-It's Our World (conservation/the environment)

All submissions should be emailed to: We ask that each submission be sent in the body of the email message (not as an attachment) and that you send a separate email message for each submission. Be sure to put "Doing Good Submission" in the 'Subject' line.

Stories should be less than 1200 words and in English.

Ensure that you include your name, address and telephone number on all correspondence and, at the top of each submission, indicate the chapter heading or topic which is most appropriate for your story. You may make as many submissions as you wish.

You may submit original unpublished stories or previously published material such as newspaper, newsletter and magazine articles, excerpts from books, online materials, etc. Please indicate if you are the author. If you are not, be sure to provide as much information as possible about the author and the publication in which it appeared.

Our rate of payment is $US100 for each story that ends up being published in our book. The book will also contain a short bio on each contributing author.

We would like to receive all submissions by no later than January 31, 2004. We hope that contributors view this as a unique opportunity to raise awareness about how anyone can make a real difference in the lives of others.

Feel free to pass this information on to other writers, journalists and anyone else who you think might be interested in contributing.

We thank you and look forward to receiving your submissions.

12/11/03 - I don't know if I'm flattered or what -- I discovered that three of my articles are being used by a high school for a course that's accessible online. The articles have my byline, but no one told me, not even the instructor, that he would use my material for his lessons. How would you feel about something like this?

11/15/03 - Can you believe it -- the holidays are here again! will be three years old next month. Wow. So many things to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. To those who celebrate the holidays, may yours be what you've always wanted!

10/21/03 - TechRepublic gave me a heads up on their new book/CD, Landing Your Next IT Job. Senior Editor Beth Blakely said, "Some of your valuable content has been republished as a part of it! You can add it to your illustrious list of places you've been published!" Yes! Thank you!

10/19/03 - I received another call for submissions from an author I had worked with -- I helped promote her book through a story-writing contest at She's Stephanie Marston [visit her website], and she has a new anthology project. This is her press release:

Do You Have A Funny Story?

Have you done something that was dumb but really funny? We all have. And now Stephanie Marston, Co-author of Chicken Soup for the Empowered Woman's Soul is seeking stories for Living Stupid: Dumb Things Smart People Do. Now you have an opportunity to contribute to this new series by sharing your humorous, true-life experiences.

What makes a good Living Stupid story?

A Living Stupid story is a humorous, true story, that tickles your funny bone or makes you laugh out loud. It's a story about something you've done that later makes you smack your head and laugh at yourself. (It can even be a funny story about someone else.)

Chapter headings will include dumb things people have done At Work, Around the House, At Play, In Love, Outdoors, On Vacation, In Friendship, With Children, With Your Parents, With Your Pets, By Yourself, During Sex. Anecdotes should be fun-loving--the more outrageous the better, but keep it clean and printable.

If you have a humorous life experience and would like to be included in Living Stupid: Dumb Things Smart People Do, send your story to Living Stupid, P.O. Box 31453, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87594-1453. Please keep a copy of your story, as submissions cannot be returned. Or email stories to (We prefer emails!) The maximum word count is 1200 words. For each story selected for the book a permission fee of $100 will be paid for the rights. There are no limits on the number of submissions. Stories must be received no later than March 15, 2004.

10/01/03 - Two chapters to go. It's been five months since I announced that I'd come up with an OurSimpleJoys exclusive: "How to Build a Writer's Showcase Site." I'm finally on my last two chapters. If my to-do list doesn't undergo a radical change in the next few weeks, I believe I can have this how-to ready for public consumption before the holidays. Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, please join me in congratulating Michelle and Amanda, a couple of extremely talented and creative young ladies, on the launch of their new website,! Site synched by [shameless plug].

09/03/03 - Another call for submissions. Let me quote the e-mail request in its entirety:

Hello Ruby :)

I just visited your beautiful site, and wondered if you would consider posting a story call-out for this book project. :) I am a co-author, and we will be accepting submissions all year. We have already received 1300 stories, but it takes a very special story to get into the book. The most important ingredient is a positive lesson or message in each story. :)

Chicken Soup for the SoulŪ series is currently looking for heartwarming, true, inspiring short stories related to music for the upcoming book, Chicken Soup for the Music Lover's Soul. Stories should be approx. 300-1200 words in length, and must make the reader "Laugh, cry or get goosebumps." If your story is accepted into the book, the writer receives $300 and a promo blurb to introduce yourself to millions of readers. For example stories, guidelines and submission information, please visit

Thank you so much! Take care,
Gail Swanson, Co-Author, "Chicken Soup for the Music Lover's Soul"

08/12/03 - Just wanted to quickly share this resource (thanks to Angela of WritingWomen at YahooGroups): The Writer Gazette's Call for Submissions page. Have fun!

07/25/03 - A mother can't be more proud. Read my 100th Inspiration/Motivation column -- "Mother and Son" -- to know what I'm talking about.

06/30/03 - We're in the middle of the year. So, is your 2003 now half-empty or half-full? How far down are you in your list of New Year's resolutions? Yes, it's a good time to re-evaluate our goals, plans, and courses of action. If I were still in the corporate world, I'd be in a meeting right now, discussing mid-year accomplishments. And I'd be saying to my boss that my department's bottom line was just break even, but the second half of the year looks very promising because we had recently launched some new and exciting projects. Here's to a more challenging second sem!

06/12/03 - The submission deadline for our "Time for Tears" anthology project is less than a month away. I'm not surprised that submissions are coming in fast and furious now. I used to be able to read and reply to each one within 24 hours of receipt, but now stories are coming in faster than I can read them. If you've e-mailed a story and I haven't acknowledged receipt (I read the story before I reply), please be patient. I'll catch up.

06/03/03 - Can you believe that -- it's June 2003. I remember when I belonged to a team that had two short years to prepare for the devastating effects of the "Millennium Bug" [sigh]. Long ago ang far away. At that time, not even my wildest dreams hinted at where I'd find myself today. Isn't life great? Gosh, I have so much to write about! How can anyone suffer from writer's block when there's so much in our past that we can talk about? Here's a good writing prompt: tell us what and where you were five years ago.

05/18/03 - Every now and then I do an online search on my name. Not so much a vanity thing as finding out where my words (my "babies"!) are. I'm pleased to know that I'm now a footnote (I found three papers that list me in their bibliographies) and a resource (I found three articles and journal entries that quoted me and my inspirational articles). [Freelance writer Amy De Wolfe gave me a compliment in one of her online journal entries. Thanks!]

Sadly, I'm also disappointed to discover that no less than five websites have published my articles without my permission. They may have included my byline, but it's still copyright infringement if I didn't grant permission to reprint the material. I should be flattered that they like my work enough to post them in their websites, but instead, I'm a little offended by their failure to show deference.

05/11/03 - Happy Mother's Day! Living in the opposite side of the world, my son greeted me several hours before all the Moms in the western hemisphere started their day. I pampered myself at the salon today, and had crabs and steak for lunch with someone special. It's great to be a mother -- and I celebrate it everyday! :)

04/29/03 - So much to do, so little time! I've just started another project. Like I don't already have more than I can handle. I'm developing an interactive online course entitled "How to Build a Writer's Showcase Site" which I will offer exclusively from OurSimpleJoys. I've already received encouragement from a couple of fellow writers who said they will be my first students. So, stay tuned! [If you want me to alert you when the course becomes available, please leave a note in my Message Page.

04/19/03 - Happy Easter to those who celebrate the holiday! Me, I've gotten my Easter Egg from TechRepublic -- they're giving me a regular submission schedule! Thank you! So now, I've added the TR logo to my right column. I'll be posting links to my published articles there. Dance of joy!

04/08/03 - I just have to share this: there are two sets of cute baby ducks (still with their MamaDucks) regularly visiting the pond outside our patio. And lately, eight turtles, ranging from about 6 in. to 2 ft. long, go basking on the west bank of the pond from 10AM to 12NN. A couple of adult ducks, the pond's mainstay, walk up to our patio everytime they see us lounging outside. It's become a routine that we're thinking of getting duck feed real soon.

Every now and then a white egret comes by, then a cormorant, preying on the fishes in the pond. We've also noticed a lot of wild bird activity: aside from the noisy blue jays, there are black birds, mockingbirds, and warblers, and yesterday I saw a hawk fly off with something huge hanging from its claws. We are so nature-tripping out here, it's a wonder I can get any writing done!

03/31/03 - New article published at Family-friendly IT careers do exist: Learn how to find them (you will need to register with the site -- just a screen name and e-mail address -- to read their articles).

TechRepublic Senior Editor Beth Blakely is one of the most gracious and highly professional executives I have worked with. Thank you!

03/16/03 - Unbelievable! I sent out a few e-mails to my writer friends inviting them to submit stories for my "tears" anthology project. I can't get over the responses! One gave me leads (agents, publishers), one gave me suggestions on how to best attract writing talent, and another told me where to best post my call for submissions. Many of them offered to forward my e-mail to their writer groups and mailing lists. And all of them promised to send me a story or two for consideration.

I've always believed in the kindness and generosity of writers -- they open their hearts and bare their souls to touch other people's lives. But I am awed at the magnitude of this kindness, now that I find myself at the receiving end. My sincerest thanks to fellow writers who have decided to take part in my "tears" project. Thank you for all your help, and for the wonderful tears (of gratitude and inspiration) you make me shed.

02/25/03 - Call for submissions! Can you make me cry? I am building an anthology of non-fiction stories that stir up only one reaction -- tears. Your story could be about joy, sadness, pain, regret, or fear. Will consider only well-written pieces, no longer than 1500 words, in the body of an e-mail to [deleted].
"Time for Tears" submission guidelines

Speaking of call for submissions, here's another lead: Colleen Sell is cordially inviting everyone to submit inspiring true stories for publication consideration in A Cup of Comfort, the acclaimed book series published by Adams Media Corporation.
"A Cup of Comfort" submission guidelines

02/11/03 - My son and I have joined hands from opposite sides of the planet to offer online tutoring services to a global clientele. If you need help with your article, story, report, speech, presentation, Web site, newsletter, resume, proposal, greeting card, love letter, or other forms of writing, we'd be happy to come to your rescue. More details at the Online Tutoring Services page.

Happy Valentine's to those who celebrate the Day of Hearts! Keep the love alive!

01/26/03 - Been busy making a couple of orders for my journal cards. One order flew off to Oregon and another to Virginia. While I was on the "production floor" waiting for my white glue to set, my muse whispered a new notepad design just in time for valentine's! So, if you're looking for something cute and dainty to give your favorite person on Valentine's Day, check out my Love-and-Cherish Notepads and Journals product line.

Reminder to freelance writers: Don't forget to visit Moira Allen's for everything about writing. The link goes directly to their "Writers Wanted" page. There are some great leads out there now.

01/02/03 - Whee! 2003! Happy New Year to everyone! Out with the old, in with the new. The start of the year is always the best time to plot a new course, shift gear, or pull over for ice cream. It's the best time to make drastic decisions like change your wardrobe or visit your dentist. Whatever you decide to do this year, don't forget to set aside some time for yourself -- you deserve it. Welcome to the next year of your life!

P.S. My "Santa's Stuck in the Chimney" rendition won First Prize in the patio decoration contest! Woohohoho!

Go to the 'What's New' Archives - 2002.

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