We had the good fortune of connecting with Robin Finn and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Robin, let’s start by talking about what inspires you?
I am inspired by women’s stories. I have fielded more requests during Covid from women who want to write than ever before. Perhaps, in these strange days, the yearning to write has become more urgent? Perhaps expressing oneself feels more necessary? I only know that women spend a tremendous amount of time in service to others…writing is a way to connect to ourselves. So many women tell me they haven’t written in years, or their writing is ‘just journaling,’ or they don’t know what to write about, or they aren’t very good writers, or they only write for work. They tell me they don’t want their writing to take time away from the kids or they don’t have anything important to say. Nothing could be further from the truth! When I work with women and listen to the power of their stories, to the depth and breadth of their life experiences, I am astonished.The women I work with inspire me. Every. Single. Day. The truth is: writing helps us understand ourselves and the world around us. Despite what many people think, you do not have to climb Mount Everest to have something important to share. Your words are worthy. Because they are.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I created and founded HEART. SOUL. PEN. writing workshops to offer a unique blend of spirituality, empowerment, and creative self-expression to women who write, want to write, or who are “writer-curious.” During Covid, I launched the Women’s Writing Den, a virtual space on the Marco Polo app for women to meet and write together, at their own time and pace, wherever they are. In class and in the Den, we examine the beliefs we hold about ourselves and our stories, we stop editing every word we write, we tune into our creative impulse, and we let go of having an “agenda” for our writing. We don’t ask for critique but, instead, share strength-based feedback that inspires us and creates momentum for our creative self-expression. Women often experience the “Divine Download,” where their writing seems to effortlessly flow out of their fingers and onto the page. It’s a revelation!
Women are so often embedded in the lives of others as partners, wives, friends, mothers, daughters, and workers. Without an anchor to your own value, inherent uniqueness, and creative power, it is easy to feel like you have “lost your voice.” This is not true. Your voice is never lost, although, it is sometimes buried. My motto is, “Don’t think, just write.” Letting go of judgment, connecting to the heart and soul of what wants to be written, and boldly releasing it onto the page can transform your creative process–and your life.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If my best friend was visiting me in L.A., I would take her to Burn the Ships Electrics in Hermosa Beach, rent some electric bikes, and ride from the store, past the Hermosa Beach Pier, stopping for lunch at the Gumtree shop and cafe. That way we could pop in and browse the cool pottery and beachy scarves and then have a BLT with avocado. The next night, we would head for the Red Door in Toluca Lake and sit in a leather booth, have a cocktail and hopefully listen to Luis Oliart jam out for a bit. The next day we’d go to Franklin Canyon for a hike and to walk around the pond and look at the ducks and turtles. That night, we’d go to dinner at Vitello’s, my favorite old-time, neighborhood Italian. If my best friend didn’t get the chicken piccata, she’d be missing out. Like any good bibliophile, I would have to take her to some book stores. First the Iliad on Cahuenga in North Hollywood, a favorite used bookstore of mine that is absolutely massive on the inside. And then we’d swing by the awesome Book Soup in West Hollywood. Since we’re driving all over L.A., we’d end at Palms Thai restaurant on Hollywood Blvd. – inexpensive, delicious, and open late!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My husband Michael has encouraged me throughout my writing and teaching journey. When I first started writing, I wrote about raising a child with severe ADHD. My husband encouraged me. When I checked out every Thursday night for years to go to a writing group, my husband was on deck. When I wrote a steamy novel. “Restless in L.A.,” and it was published, my husband took me to dinner at the restaurant in the hotel that was featured in the book. When my first (very personal!) personal essay came out in The New York Times, “When Our Daughter Walked In On Us,” my husband, who was obviously featured in this essay, laughed with me and sent the article to everyone he knew. He has supported me through the launch of my women’s writing program, Heart. Soul. Pen., and basically through every endeavor I have ever undertaken – including raising our three kids. There are many people I could thank and many people that I am grateful for. But I couldn’t have done any of this without Michael’s love and support.
Youtube: Robin Finn Author