So excited to share with you this interview with Tatum! Are you craving more raw, authentic and honest content? Tatum has it all in the pages of her magazine ‘THIS IS..”. AH, how refreshing.
Tatum has created something so special with her magazine, she has created a space for connection and healing. Her platform welcomes women from all over the world and provides a safe place for them to share stories and truth. Her readers are presented with raw content. When reading her magazine, I find myself constantly thinking
“WOW , YES! I can totally relate”
Bye bye celebrity gossip and photoshopped images that only sets unrealistic expectations for girls and Hello Hello good stuff!
Tatum has created this mag while working a full time job, she has some awesome tips on time management and shares her personal experience of making something she is passionate about a part of her life and hopefully in the future, her full time thing!
Sit back wherever you may be and enjoy, as Tatum reveals to us the behind the scenes thoughts and actions that go with This Is…
I’m Tatum Garino and I am 25 years old. By day, I am a marketing coordinator at a software company and by night (and on my lunch hour) I’m the editor-in-chief of This Is… magazine. I’m a wife, sister, daughter, friend and soon-to-be dog mom! While all of these things are true, I mostly consider myself to be a writer, which took a long time to own. For the majority of my life I let other people refer to me as a “writer” instead of claiming it as my title because I didn’t feel “legitimate.” But, I have since realized that’s a ridiculous way of thinking, especially because calling myself a writer doesn’t necessarily imply I’m a good one 🙂 Overall I’m a work in progress living in the Seattle area trying to make money while fulfilling my dream of owning a magazine.
When did you start the Magazine? What lead you up to starting it?
I started This Is… in the summer of 2017 but I didn’t publish its first issue until January 2018. Before I came up with the idea, I had been working as a Quality Assurance Manager at a software company and chose to leave when my husband and I moved down to Southern California for a few months for his training before he left on a deployment with his unit in the Marine Corps. When I left my job, I was in no hurry to get a new one as I was most concerned with spending time with my husband before he left and I knew that as soon as he did I would be moving in with family for the duration of his deployment and we would have very minimal bills to pay until he got back. After he left, I focused a lot on myself because I had so much time on my hands – it was easier to let life pass me by while I was working a 9-5 (really a 6:30-3:30 in my case) but once I had the entire day at my disposal to do whatever I wanted, I really started searching for the answer to what it is I wanted. During that “soul-searching” I realized my purpose in life, other than one day being a mom, is to make people realize and feel that they’re not alone. I also realized my passion in life is to create (that wasn’t much of a surprise). So these were the things on my mind and driving my actions on the day the idea for This Is… came to me. I’d always known my dream job was to own a magazine – I’ve been reading and collaging magazines since I was in elementary school and I love so many aspects being the editor-in-chief of a magazine entails: the planning, the layouts, the writing, the organizing, etc. The idea for This Is… came to me as most of my ideas do, in the car while I was driving to my friend’s house – AKA at a moment when I couldn’t write down my idea! After this idea came to me the entire drive to my friend’s was then spent repeating my ideas in my head so I wouldn’t forget them by the time I got to her house and could write them down.
How did you chose the title THIS IS…:?
While the title honestly just popped into my mind, the point behind it is that every section of the magazine finishes that sentence. For example, some sections in the magazine are “Adulting,” “Real,” and “Vulnerable” so those sections, paired with the title of the magazine, create the sentences, “This is adulting,” “This is real,” and “This is vulnerable.” Then, all the articles within those sections revolve around that idea that the sentence portrays. As far as the sentence structure, I wanted the section titles to finish “This Is…” because the magazine is all about being honest, raw, and real and cutting out the bullshit of other media, like Photoshopped models and social media highlight reels, so I wanted the section titles to serve as a replacement for the sentence “This is bullshit.” to juxtapose the things that the magazine stands for with the things that we think are bullshit. For example, we think being fake is bullshit so instead we’re real, hence “This is real.” It’s not that way for every section but that was the ideology behind it.
What was the purpose of creating THIS IS… Magazine? Tell us about how it differs from most magazines we’re used to.
The purpose of creating This Is… was first and foremost to try to help people realize they’re not alone – to make them aware that there are others in this world that have experienced similar things and can relate or others who can validate their feelings because they feel the same way. The second purpose was to focus on women and share the stories that are relatable, which come from real women. Therefore, our “mottos” are “Sharing stories about real women, by women, for women.” and “No celebrities. No Photoshop. No bullshit.” So, we are all about you and not about the them that traditional media tend to portray. Instead of sharing the picture-perfect yet Photoshopped models and celebrities, the topics that aren’t taboo, and the “relatable” stories of people with lifestyles outside of our budgets and reality we share the raw, real, and relatable stories of real women so that you can see yourself among the pages of our magazine, even if it’s not your particular story you’re reading.
When you were in the process of creating, did any negative/limiting thoughts come up? If so, how did you deal with them?
Negative and limiting thoughts came up all the time during the creating process and they still do. Most often my thought is that I’m/it’s not good enough. I get overwhelmed with this fear that people won’t take the magazine or me seriously because we’re only digital at this point and it’s in such a grass-roots phase of trying to grow and become something. But, I push through for a few different reasons. First is the knowledge that you have to start somewhere – even Oprah didn’t create her empire overnight. Second are my supporters and believers – the early adopters who have continuously encouraged and reminded me that what This Is… is doing is important. Third and finally, and most importantly, is the unexpected benefit of what This Is.. has become – I originally created This Is… to be a place to read stories like yours to no longer feel alone but what I didn’t expect but what has happened is that people have sought out This Is… as a platform to share their story as a sort of therapy. And, because of that, I keep going because if I were to stop This Is… then those women would lose their platform. Plus, regardless of what anyone else thinks of This Is… I love doing it and creating it and bringing together this community of women so at the end of the day I’ll keep doing it for selfish reasons 🙂
Your content is raw, unfiltered and holds a lot of truth. What type of information are girls likely to see in the pages of THIS IS…?
We go there. All the topics you thought were taboo no longer are when you reach the pages of This Is… We cover things from miscarriages to anxiety to transitioning into the adult world to fun things like cute outfit ideas on a budget. To give you an idea of the categories of topics we cover, the sections in This Is… include: Adulting, Failure, Generous, Good Shit, Healthy, How To, Inspiring, LOL Worthy, Love, Newsworthy, Opinionated, Party Time, Real, The World, Vulnerable, and Yours.
Launching a Magazine takes time and commitment, how do you hold yourself accountable and manage your time while working?
Oh boy – if someone has the secret to success on managing your time while working please let me know! I am by no means an expert on this – I’ve been doing this for a year now and I still find myself in crunch-time the last two weeks before a launch holed up in my house all weekend until the magazine is ready to publish. However, since I’ve been doing this for the past year I have gotten better and found what works best for me: I have to schedule my magazine time as if I’m meeting with someone else. What I mean by that is I literally have to put time on my calendar each week and treat it as if I’m meeting someone during that time (that way I know I won’t bail or double-book myself) so that if something else comes up during that time I know I’m busy so I will say no to whatever else comes up. As far as a schedule, I use every lunch hour of mine to work on my magazine while I eat and drink my tea at a nearby coffee shop (in fact, that’s where I’m currently typing up these answers :)). I’ve found this to be extremely helpful because I’m able to get an hour in each day where I wouldn’t be doing anything else so I’m a lot less distracted and it gives me a break from my work duties. It’s also really nice because I easily get five hours of work in each week on the magazine and it’s a lot easier to do when it’s split up over five days as opposed to spending five hours straight on a Saturday working on it. I try to keep my weeknights free of magazine work at home to spend with my husband or schedule normal life appointments like going to the doctor or even getting my eyebrows waxed and then my weekends are when I’ll schedule “magazine time” for myself. However, I do have an exception to the weeknight rule where I will work on the magazine on a weeknight if I’m interviewing someone because I’ll typically schedule those interviews over dinner or drinks after work.
Does vulnerability or/and intuition play a role in THIS IS… for you? If so how?
Vulnerability is huge when it comes to This Is… People, including myself, are sharing their stories of heartbreak, triumph, failure, etc. and while they have the option to remain anonymous a lot of them don’t and that is an extremely vulnerable place to be – with your story out there for the world to judge. From an “owner” perspective I feel vulnerable because This Is… is my baby – if it fails, I feel as though I’ve failed. But, like I said before, I keep going because you have to start somewhere, it’s important, and people are depending on it now.
When starting a business or a project of any kind, it’s important to invest in it. Whether that is time, monetary value ect. Can you tell us about what ways you invested to help make this happen?
I absolutely have invested money into making This Is… happen – in the beginning it was a couple thousand dollars over the course of a few months in order to get the name trademarked, to purchase the Adobe tools I needed, to buy the website, to buy business cards, etc. Since then I’ve continued to spend money here and there – typically to print a couple versions of the magazine for myself or for contest winners because although This Is… is a digital magazine I still prefer print 🙂 My next monetary expenditures will be establishing an LLC and getting a PO box. Other than monetarily, I’ve invested a ton of time and also personal experiences and relationships into This Is… In the beginning, before we existed, I tapped into every female in my life to share their stories to create a first issue and they continue to be contributors when they have something to contribute but the contributor base has expanded so far beyond people I know at this point that the investment of my personal relationships into This Is… has significantly decreased.
Longterm, where do you see THIS IS… Mag going?
Longterm I want you to be able to buy This Is… at the checkout stand. I want to take it from purely digital to print. And, of course, I’d love for it to become profitable so that it could be my full time job. I also would love for it to expand beyond the magazine – potentially into a podcast where I interview people featured in the magazine on a deeper level so that you can get to know more about their story beyond what we could fit onto a few pages in the magazine.
Do you have any tips for girls who wish to start a magazine too?
Timing is everything. And I don’t mean it in the sense of timing being everything to get noticed, I mean the timing of starting a magazine is everything because you need to be at a place in your life where you’re ready to fully commit and invest in it. For example, I know my limitations so I chose to create a seasonal magazine that comes out once every three months – giving me three months to work on each issue as opposed to trying to rush and publish once a month and then publishing shit content. Be honest with yourself about what you’re willing to commit to your magazine and then decide if the timing is right. But once you figure that out, just do it. Remember, you have to start somewhere.
Who can access this magazine, how can they go about doing so?
The magazine is free and available to anyone and everyone! Although, it is targeted at the female population 🙂 It can be accessed digitally at www.thisismag.com where you can also find the link to purchase your own print version of it, if you prefer print like me. You can also follow along with us on Instagram at @thisismagazine. The link to our website with the mag is in our bio there, too. We also have the email feature plugged into our Instagram but if anyone wants to contribute you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
What do you provide ? Links to website? Videos? Pages?