Catherine Khom is the founder and editor-in-chief of the online and print publication, Local Wolves Magazine. It's a beautifully curated magazine that delves into the most creative minds from the world of entertainment, art, and culture (Bastille, Charile Puth, Tori Kelly, and Jenn Im have graced the cover!). We had the pleasure of learning more about Catherine's background, current role, and future endeavors. It's clear that Local Wolves is only going up from here!
My name is Catherine Khom, and I'm from Long Beach, California. In elementary school, I would read magazines in the library during recess; I lived in the arts and crafts section -- it was my everything! I have also always loved fashion and design. During middle school, I dreamt of being the next Lauren Conrad. She is a huge inspiration to me! The television show, The Hills, motivated me to pick up a copy of Teen Vogue, and I became obsessed with editorial design and the whole "behind the scenes" aspect of creating a monthly magazine. In high school, I joined a few music publications that allowed me to photograph concerts, which amplified my photography dreams.
Local Wolves was created on April 12, 2012, and it actually began as a music blog. My friends and I would write live reviews, music news, and explore the local scene in Los Angeles and Orange County. During my freshman year of college, I took a break from Local Wolves to focus on academics entirely, and I really missed the creative side of things, so I had to get back into it. My sister/copy editor, Sophia, and I were watching YouTube videos and found so many awesome content creators that would be cool to feature. We began to feature more content creators and pushed the Local Wolves "blog" into an online and print publication. All of the hard work and fun still continues!
Growing up, my classmates would fangirl over books and new popular TV series, but I was always more drawn to magazines. I still get giddy and excited when I find new independent publications to read. Local Wolves is curated original content that is driven by a passion for the best coverage and photography to create an adaptive aesthetic for our readers. Our readers are the best! We call them "Wolfies" and I would describe them as someone who has a knack for local goodness in art, music, and entertainment. We make sure to remain adaptive, incorporating a different concept or theme in each issue to engage our readers. Their feedback means a lot to us, and it not only creates open discussions about topics that others may just brush aside, but it also helps us move forward. Local Wolves is not only a publication, but also a platform for others to share their passions, unique talents, and creativity from any background or field. The "Wolfie" community is a pool of creative minds and storytellers involved in amazing projects in their local scene, and we are here to support and share their stories with our readers.
As the editor-in-chief, there are a lot of deadlines to keep tabs on. I go through several emails a day and work with my publicist on new ideas, follow-ups, and making sure upcoming content is edited. I also spend time researching and reaching out to creatives and talents that we want to feature. Visual mood boards are essential in what I do because ideas can turn into an overall theme for an issue. Every day varies!
Local Wolves delves into the creative minds of individuals and shares their struggles, successes, and experiences. I wanted to focus on creating a publication that involves lifestyle, in-depth stories, and meaningful conversations of ordinary people doing what they love. One of my favorite stories was from our October 2016 issue, Inspiring Souls, which featured Stephanie and Melissa Valenzuela of The Fashion Citizen. They discussed what creative freedom meant to them, their personal style, and the importance of staying true to their local roots in Arizona.
Consistency is key! PLANOLY has been a huge lifesaver by providing all of the key elements we need to decide what content to post. We use our Instagram as a platform to share inspiring stories and to encourage others to explore their local neighborhood. It's so awesome to see the #localwolves and #wolfiecommunity tag!
Social media has helped shape Local Wolves to become more adaptive. Response and influence provide the ability to communicate and connect with other creatives. The Wolfie community is diverse, and interacting with our readers is a huge element of what we do. We always make it a point to hear what our readers have to say -- the good and the bad. Feedback helps us work harder to produce the best original content possible.
For aspiring editors, I suggest biting the bullet and buying a domain to create your own website! I also recommend keeping your written or published work, especially any editorial work. Tear sheets are awesome because they're like snapshots of your hard work that have been published. Don't get too caught up in the numbers, do what you're passionate about and take risks. Avoid stressing over perfection! Create what you want and network with people in your community. Be open to exploring your horizons and challenge yourself. Creativity will never fade away. Ideas can expand into endless opportunities.