The Billfold shut down this week.
I started reading The Billfold when I was in my second year of design school. I was 19 and deeply unhappy with the state my life was in, and I also knew that I was a freak who wanted to talk about money and read about money and learn about money. The Billfold became that space for me, a place where I could read about being good with money, being bad with money, and having all kinds of feelings about money.
I pitched The Billfold once, in 2013. I did a Doing Money story, and I did a Friday Chat. Real words that I wrote were published in The Billfold. I read The Billfold when I lived in New York for an internship, when I moved home and was out of school for a semester, when I moved (briefly) to Los Angeles, when I went back to school (suddenly) at WMU. I read The Billfold when I moved to Mississippi, when I started teaching, when I stayed and stayed teaching. I read The Billfold when I bought my house.
The Billfold was a common thread alongside a lot of growing up for me. There have been other blogs, of course – once upon a time, I was really into Apartment Therapy, Door Sixteen, and Manhattan Nest. I’ve read Austin Kleon’s tumblr here and there for years. I was an avid reader in the glory days of The Toast. Let’s just take a moment to remember how wonderful The Toast was in it’s prime.
There are other money blogs too – Afford Anything is great, Bitches Get Riches gives me life, and I’ve been reading The Financial Diet since they started. And we can’t forget Bad With Money, which I actually found out about from a post on The Billfold in 2016.
Last week, when Nicole wrote that The Billfold was would shut down, I was shocked – it had never reached vast levels of success or fame, but they always seemed like a small scale, sustainable blog. It just came out of thin air, it seemed – I was surprised and disappointed and nostalgic all at once.
It’s weird – I never thought that I would get that invested in a blog that wasn’t my own, that I would actually feel something about it. We don’t have a script for that – we don’t think that the media we enjoy may someday disappear, and that it may happen so suddenly.