About Robin

It's me!

I’m the author of the nov­els Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore, a New York Times Best Seller published in 2012, and Sourdough, a non-New York Times Best Seller but still very good book pub­lished in 2017. In addi­tion to those, I’ve pro­duced an assort­ment of short sto­ries and odd-shaped inter­net projects. My 2009 novella Annabel Scheme was an early Kick­starter suc­cess and still claims a spe­cial place in my heart. My app Fish is a new kind of book entirely.

I’ve writ­ten fic­tion and com­men­tary for many dif­fer­ent publications. In 2020, I wrote a serial that was pub­lished daily on the front page of the Mer­cury News and the East Bay Times! It was a total throwback, and one of the great hon­ors of my writ­ing life so far.

If you are look­ing for a short bio to use in an introduction, please fol­low this link. You can find a high-resolution ver­sion of the por­trait above right here.


You can reach me via email: robin@robinsloan.com


I grew up in Troy, Michigan, and went to school at Michi­gan State University, where I studied eco­nom­ics and co-founded a lit­er­ary mag­a­zine called Oats. Between 2002 and 2012, I worked at the Poyn­ter Institute, Cur­rent TV, and Twitter, and at all those places, my job had some­thing to do with fig­ur­ing out the future of media. Since 2012, fic­tion has paid my bills.

With my part­ner Kathryn Tomajan, I make California extra vir­gin olive oil, avail­able by sub­scrip­tion or by the tin. Every ship­ment includes a zine that I write, design, and print!

I am one half of The Cot­ton Modules, a band formed with the com­poser Jesse Solomon Clark. Our debut album is Shadow Planet.

I am the pro­gram­ming equiv­a­lent of a home cook, and I’ve shared many projects on GitHub, includ­ing a simple, sturdy e-book template.

Back in 2004, I co-pro­duced, with Matt Thompson, a strange short film (?) called EPIC 2014. You can watch it courtesy of one of the many YouTube rips.


Here’s the first-ever image of a multi-planet sys­tem around a Sun-like star:

A blob of yellow-red light sur­rounded by smaller blobs of light: gas giants orbit­ing a dis­tant star

It’s a big world out there, folks.

March 2022, Berkeley