Hi, and welcome to my blog! I’m C: a mid-30s, long-term single woman with a humanities PhD and a desire to keep afloat without a second income — as well as to catch up after a dozen financially “lost” post-college years. I write primarily about my own life and finances, and I’m obviously no professional; any advice I give is to be taken with plenty of salt.
I started my adult life in debt, borrowing a few thousand dollars for my first year of college, and throughout my 20s and early 30s, while living in New York City as a freelance writer/editor, a theater/tv/film worker, and a graduate student, I mostly tried to stay frugal, but my student loan balances crept steadily upwards and I bounced in and out of credit card debt. I had health insurance only intermittently, never started a retirement account, occasionally borrowed from my parents, and in short, made all the mistakes that go along with assuming you’ll always be ok with being a starving artist.
When I received my Ph.D. and moved out of New York in June 2013, I decided it was time to grow up a little; I opened up a mint.com account and set a nebulous goal of paying off my student loans in a year. In March 2014, I had made headway on that goal, but I wasn’t really on schedule…and then some Life Stuff happened, I found myself googling “pay off student loans vs. retirement savings,” and the next thing you know I was neck-deep in the personal finance blogosphere. I knew right away that I wanted in — I wanted to talk to and with people who, just like me, were struggling with the financial ups and downs of life.
As of December 31, 2014, I’m 100% consumer and student-debt-free, having paid off $23697 in the 18 months after graduation. From here forward, I plan to keep talking about debt (both how I got into it, and how I got out), but also to focus on budgeting, savings, and the emotional side of money management.