If you are on Tumblr for any extended period of time, and you aren’t looking at lame internet memes, you have surely crossed paths with some content put out there by Jack Archer of “Where is the cool?” and “Surplus Magazine.” Jack is well-known for his ability to compile a voluminous amount of awesome stuff. Wanting to learn more about him and his work, I asked him a few questions.
Electrogent: Introduce yourself to those who might not know you or your work.
Jack: My name is Jack Archer and I’ve lived in Southern California for the last seven years. I started WhereIsTheCool.com, a lifestyle inspiration site and Surplus, a product focused web magazine for guys.
E: Talking specifically about Surplus Magazine: what was your inspiration for it? How would you characterize it?
J: I wanted a place online to catalog my favorite things and share them with other like-minded people. You can add a lot of value to someone’s browsing experience by filtering and showcasing the best of the best so they don’t have to go looking themselves.
E: Your other website, “Where is the cool?” is one of the most popular Tumblr-based pages around, in large part because of its wide appeal to many people. What made you take on a second website? What does WITC do that Surplus doesn’t?
J: I created Surplus because I wanted to focus on things that were tangible. With WITC, it’s more of a feeling. A beautiful view, a beautiful woman, a beautiful car. That kinda stuff. With Surplus, you can own it.
E: Do you fill your websites with things that influence you personally, or do you tailor it for the wider appeal?
J: My projects are a complete reflection of my personal taste. I think once someone connects with a site, they connect with the taste more than anything. If you try to cater towards anything else, it just comes off as unauthentic.
E: How much time do you devote to your websites in a day?
J: It depends on the day. At least four hours, usually more.
E: How do you escape the rigors of operating two websites which consist of large volume updates?
J: Nothing rigorous about it. Building websites and audiences is my favorite thing in the world.
E: Do you do all of this alone, or do you have a team to help out?
J: I have a writing parter at Surplus and two support members at WITC that help when needed. There are also people that handle the advertising.
E: WITC has a shop with an assortment of items in it. How did this come about? Are you selling these items retail or as an affiliate?
J: It seemed like the next logical step in growing the WITC brand. There are so many amazing products and companies/people behind them out there. We’re going to be doing some exciting things with the store soon.
E: If you were to give three pieces of advice to someone who wants to do what you do, what would they be?
J: Update consistently and often, invest in high quality web design and learn from each of your mistakes. You’ll make a few.
E: What is your life like outside of your websites? Do you have another job?
J: I’m currently the Creative Director of a tech/media incubator and we’re launching our first product soon. It’s a social bookmarking site for a niche community. I also do consulting on the side and help brands with their digital strategy.
My thanks to Jack for taking time out of his day to answer a few of my questions and to shed light on his life as a men’s lifestyle blogger.
Do you have any questions for Jack? Ask him in the comments below.