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Founder: Heart.Soul.Pen.® for women writers & the Women’s Writing Den. Essays: @NYTimes @WashPo @LATimes @BuzzFeed. Author: “Restless in L.A.” www.robinfinn.com
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Special thanks to my plant shaman mama, Carrie K., who has inspired my gardening journey.

Something strange is happening: I’ve been “gardening.”

For me, this is very bizarre, unheard of really. I am not a plant person. I have never been. I have never kept a single plant alive in my life and yet, I am doing it. It has now been one week and one day and the succulents I replanted are still living.

Not only that, but I apparently helped save the houseplant I bought for my newly redesigned TV room that my husband said he was going to care for but didn’t. The houseplant was on its deathbed, stooped over with brown…


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Photo by Helen Cramer on Unsplash

The pandemic makes me bored at night. I get sick of being online and consider doing things I have never done before, like going into the kitchen and putting a copper kettle on the stove and making myself some real writer tea. The problem is I don’t have a copper kettle and I don’t like tea.

Last night, my thoughts were swirling but I couldn’t get a hand on them. I felt like one of those pudding cups you buy in a four-pack at Ralph’s, the kind you devour but small piles of pudding remain in the corners. It’s hard…


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My daughter is back in the United States. Last night, before I went to bed, I spoke to her from her apartment on campus. I said goodnight and then turned off the light. M husband and I went out of town for two nights. I picked up my phone and checked the Find My Friends app, which I refer to as the Find My Kids app. I could see the kids were all tucked away at home — within 3000 miles of me. I turned on my white noise app, plugged in the phone, and closed my eyes.

I have…


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This column marks one year, 52 weeks, since I turned 50. On Thursday, I will be 51. The first essay I wrote for this column, Sleepless in the San Fernando Valley, was Happy 50th Birthday, Bitch. In it, I welcomed myself to this 6th decade of my life. I promised to publish a piece every Monday for the entire year that I was fifty. Today, I have met this goal.

Realizing this brings up a mix of emotions: pride, that I did what I said I was going to do; sadness at the fact that the year went sideways in…


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Cookie Monster’s Every Monster Cookie | Rachael Ray Show

I am working on a new book. In it, I am writing about the joy of unfettered self-expression and how that can transform a person’s life. Right now, I am at the part about the gremlin voices that shut writers down. I am specifically referring to gremlin voices that say things about how we are too small and not enough and no one cares and why should I write this and blah blah blah.

The strange thing is, as I am writing this section, I am also listening to my gremlin bombard me with reasons why I should hang up…


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Photo by Jonathan Meyer on Unsplash

I was looking at a list of qualities that begin with the letter P and thinking about what to write this week. This little group of P-words jumped out at me and seemed to want to be in this essay so I went with it. I was staring at the word peace and that made me think about Mike Pence. Not because Pence is peaceful but because of alliteration.

I was thinking about being peaceful and how I would like to sit outside in my back yard and feel peaceful but my neighbors were moving the air conditioning units on…


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I went to the beach this weekend. Ever since I scattered my mom’s ashes in the ocean, I feel like I can talk to her when I see the waves. But, this time, I couldn’t.

I looked at the ocean but I was consumed with so many things: anger and sadness over what has happened to the state of the United States, grief and shock over the death of one of my kid’s beloved teachers from elementary school from Covid, worry that my youngest kid wasn’t feeling well, concern for my husband who was having body aches after his second…


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Could this be me in 2021?

My New Year’s Resolution for 2021 is to engage in self-nurturing activities. My current self-nurturing practice includes lying in my bed and thinking about self-nurturing activities, such as: meditating, going for a run, reading a critically-acclaimed book, learning origami, taking up a 30-day yoga challenge, becoming a vegetarian, or learning to ride a horse.

I tell the writers I work with that thinking about writing and writing are not the same thing. Writing is what you do when you write. Thinking about writing is what you do when you do nothing, but feel like you did something because you thought…


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The Women’s Writing Den 3-week, Year-in-Review Challenge.

On August 19, 2020, the virtual Women’s Writing Den launched. Four short months later, more than a dozen women participated in the 2020 Year-in-Review writing challenge. These women have been writing and sharing for months. They have shown up on Mondays to make commitments to their writing, their creativity, and themselves. They have shown up on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays to post 2-minute mini-writes. On Fridays, we have engaged in self-nurturing practices. Day after day. Week after week. Month after month.

In 2021, we are going deeper into, What’s My Project? We are going to examine what wants to be…

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