Ways to get featured on the tumblr prose tag:
- Write a thing about one of the editor’s birthdays
- Be friends with one of the editors
- Literally beg; point out that you’ve recently been dumped, say it’s your birthday.
- Already have been featured many, many times before
I know that complaining about this comes off as pretty bitter, but boo you know, this system is so flawed. A lot of the writer’s who get featured constantly are very talented, but they are featured constantly, they already have a huge following, they are known to the tumblr writing community - original content from unknown blogs is ignored in favour of telling us over and over about the same people.
I’m with lettersforburning on this one, I miss nominating a blog every week, I miss being involved in choosing the work that rises to the top.
I’m with the both of you. There are so many great writers out there that never get featured and you have the same group of people who always do. Taste varies, but I mean please. You shouldn’t have to kiss ass to get featured, nor should you have to write tripe that kisses ass to get featured. Tumblr’s Prose editors are fine people, but I wish there was more variety into what gets featured. Any person who is going to be in a position of power needs to stray away from favoritism and try to be as objective as possible, and it isn’t any one person’s fault the tag is the way it is but perhaps there should be different taste in the editor’s pool.
I don’t even want to begin to discuss the poetry tag, it seems like a lost cause at this point.
Because I’m feeling this discussion right now:
Honestly, the whole Featured Tags system on Tumblr is flawed. For most of the literary tags (long reads, prose, poetry, lit) especially it’s all the same handful of editors, and they need to be coddled in order to feature one’s work or quote. Do not even get me started on the lit tag. Speaking as someone who’s been featured a handful of times on that tag in particular, I actually found myself posting quotes/poetry and then asking myself what chances it had of getting chosen by one of the editors. I wasn’t getting so bad that I actually posted things in the hopes that they would all get featured, but the fact that I even had to ask that question to myself makes me slightly queasy. And talk about lack of variance on the lit/poetry tags as well. I feel like prose is a little different with subject matter, even if it’s all the same people getting featured time and time again, but I swear to God that if I see one more verse from Sylvia Plath’s “Mad Girl’s Love Song” (or any Sylvia Plath in general, tbh) or Pablo Neruda’s “Sonnet XVII” I might just throw my laptop out of the window.
But going back to the prose tag issues, no one should have to suck up in order to get their work featured—though it actually makes me kind of sick that people even have to go there in the first place because they want to get their stuff featured. I mean, I totally understand continuously posting your writing and tagging it with ‘prose’ for six months and not getting on the prose tag throughout that entire time. I totally get how frustrating it can be to be below the radar (literally) when you’re doing everything that you can to get your things featured without crossing any boundaries yourself and being patient and quiet.
And then I came to a slightly horrifying realization: that it’s not just the Editors who are fucking up the system, it’s everyone else, too: whether it be the people who are constantly getting featured or the people who are actively whining and complaining to the Editors and throwing shade about not getting featured. It’s at a point now where people are EXPECTING favoritism. I mean, honestly, I’m still not very clear about how Editors even GET selected in the first place (I’ve reread that FAQ about ten times and still, nada) but I DO know that Tumblr might want to check themselves on that system because it honestly just seems like the same damn people on the Editor’s list, save for maybe two or three bloggers.
I realize that not everyone is on Tumblr to write for themselves. A lot of us need/want an audience, if only for the critique (though let’s be honest for a moment and say reblogs.) Since this is the case, some other kind of system really needs to be put into place.
Because, yeah, okay, at the end of the day, it’s just the internet. We’re all strangers in this magical multi-dimensional universe called Tumblr. But I’m a little disappointed with how things are currently being run and that huge flaws are continuing to be overlooked with the featured (and okay, radar needs to be revisited too) tags and the Editors that “cultivate” them.