Nicole Cliffe, the books editor at The Hairpin, is leaving The Awl network’s site to start her own. Ms. Cliffe is partnering with Mallory Ortberg, who is a familiar name over at The Hairpin and has contriubuted to Gawker, The Atlantic and The Gloss. The new site will launch on July 1.
“Where am I going? Well, on July 1st, Mallory Ortberg and I are launching our own site,” Ms. Cliff wrote, in her goodbye post on The Hairpin late this morning. “You’ll hear more about it later. Leaning in, following your dreams, etc.”
The commenters, many of whom expressed their emotions through gifs, were upset that Ms. Cliffe was leaving, but cheered by the news that they will have another website to read.
In the goodbye post, Ms. Cliffe wrote that the new site is a “very-recent decision to venture out on my own, like one of those starfish it’s supposed to be worth your effort to toss back into the ocean in inspirational email forwards from 1998.” Ms. Cliffe started at The Hairpin in June 2011.
UPDATE [2:35 pm]: Ms. Cliffe responded to our request to elaborate on the new site:
Well, like many of the blogs that now litter the popular landscape, we’ll be publishing personal narratives and humor and feminist content and some longform journalism, but also original short fiction and poetry. We’re hoping to be a great venue for smart, funny young writers looking for opportunities to be paid (though less than they deserve, no doubt) for original content. Like The Hairpin, we’re primarily but not exclusively lady-focused, and intractably odd. We do have a name, but we’ll hold off on that for now (not for dramatic purposes, more the logistics of domains and hosting and novelty tee-shirts.)
In terms of going it alone, Choire Sicha has always wondered why more people don’t start their own professional sites, and Mallory and I always knew we would one day want to collaborate in a meaningful way. So the question really became, why not now? I’ll miss The Hairpin terribly, but I will continue writing my ‘Pin Picks column on a semi-monthly basis, and, of course, we’re not competing to sell widgets to anyone; just adding an RSS feed.