BADASS: CATHRINE KHOM
Cathrine Khom is paving her own way in the editorial world. Her dedication to creating Local Wolves Magazine and the passion for authentic creativity makes Cathrine one bombass badass!
How did you find your path/story?
I have always been into arts and crafts, as a kid like for instance, I would spend the majority of my time during recess to read American Girl and the Highlights’ arts and crafts section—it led me to express my creative side from scrapbooking, journaling to photography.
Local Wolves was created in April 2012 and it was during my senior year of high school while college was on my mind but I love the aspect of managing a staff, designing layouts and planning features and everything in-between. Local Wolves started as a music blog featuring live show reviews and within a few months, it gradually began an online/print publication releasing monthly content on issuu. Throughout the years, there were many challenges but I am very lucky to have such an amazing group of individuals that are on my team to help make every issue become more creative and engaging with our readers.
What is a significant moment that helped lead you to where you are today?
Throughout my years at California State University of Long Beach, my professors would always emphasize on how important networking will become in the long run. I love meeting new creative individuals who are extremely passionate about their work and whether it’s for coffee or brunch, it’s fascinating to hear about other people’s stories, it’s truly inspiring. I am thankful for all the moments in my life that pushed me to continue to challenge myself from my first meeting at Capitol Records to being invited as an issuu Generator at their Generators Camp in San Francisco—I’ve learned about who I am, and how important this publication means to me. During my early years in college, I spoke with a career counselor about certain career paths and I brought a print copy of my magazine to show her. She was shocked that I was able to produce a magazine while still in school and I was speechless to the point where I just cried… I knew I was meant to continue with Local Wolves so here I am, still living and breathing for this publication.
How did you find what makes you happy?
From the moment that I start to work on the issue to when I click the ‘publish’ button to share with the rest of the world. It is all of the hard work, endless hours of e-mails and communicating with my staff to make sure that we are publishing the quality content for our readers. It makes me happy to hear the positive responses and feedback from our readers, and I honestly feel it is the best feeling to receive the love and support from those who appreciate your work.
Role Models: Editor-In-Chief of Allure, Michelle Lee
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What does authenticity mean to you?
Authenticity means being honest, genuine and original—I believe that everyone has their own source of inspiration. Authenticity is being comfortable in your own skin, not worrying about what others think and remaining true to who you are no matter what.
What is one piece of advice you would give to your middle school self?
I found a quote that states, “Not everyone will ‘get’ you and that is perfectly fine.” You are who you are, and there is no need to change the way you are. Take ownership for all the hard work you’ve done and be vocal about what you are passionate about. Remain strong in front of a crowd of people and stay driven.
What does a successful day look like for you?
An empty inbox, all the tasks and assignments are sent and several Pinterest and Tumblr links to create vision boards for upcoming editorial shoots. I love being able to engage with my staff about new projects in the works, and making sure everyone is able to dedicate their time to something they are excited about working on. A lot of my tasks vary depending on certain features, projects and themes for the issues, but overall—lists are my everything.
Must have item in my closet: My oversize gray blazer from Madewell!
What is the hardest thing (personally or professionally) that you have had to face? And what have you learned from it?
The hardest thing I had to face was dealing with criticism as a small-based publication. I’ve learned that magazines are not always everyone’s cup of tea, and Local Wolves is driven towards a young audience who have a passion to create and the publication is an outlet for all creative minds to share their work—there is no need to worry about numbers or followers.
How do you handle tough days or situations?
A cup of chai tea with a splash of soy creamer, I take a deep breath and dive into the overall logistics or the ‘hiccup’ of the situation. I admit that everyday is never peachy keen, as a publication, there are times where deadlines are very crucial and over the years, I’ve learned that everything will be fine. Taking a step back and looking at the big picture, it does make a huge difference and now I’m like ‘don’t sweat and fixate on the small stuff.’
What is your proudest moment?
In Spring 2016, during my graduation ceremony, I remembered when the announcer called my name and my friend, Jolene helped me to create “The time has Khom” on my graduation cap with a wolf that symbolized Local Wolves—wow, that was the moment when I realized that I still managed to do what I love, finished college with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Health Care Administration and I have supportive friends and family in my life—all the hard work, many teary-eyed moments and long train rides were well worth it.
How do you handle societal pressures to be a certain way or do certain things? (ex: pressure to have sex or drink or dress a certain way)
Looking through all my family photo albums, I’ve changed a lot. Clothing trends were a huge component when I moved to Riverside for a few months. I remember my entire fourth/fifth grade combo class all decked out in all the latest brands (back in the day, Hollister, Abercrombie & Fitch and Limited Too) were ‘popular’ status. I always felt like I never fit in with the kids in my class because my previous school was strictly uniforms with the variation of only red, blue or khaki colored clothing. I never had the change to opt out so being a part of a school that allowed it made me feel different. I would go to the mall on the weekends to find something that would make me fit in with the rest of the kids at school. It lasted for a month and I decided that brands do not define me, I want to wear what I felt most comfortable in and whether it was my hoodie or a striped turtleneck, I knew that I didn’t need to impress anyone, I need to just focus on embracing my true self.