Long time, no Funmi, right? Well, since I started working as the Editor-In-Chief, I’ve been doing way more reading and far less writing. I’m sure I wasn’t missed sha. You’ve clearly had enough posts to keep you guys doing what you do best – chatting, arguing and just keeping the comments section lit.
Still, I totally have FOMO so I’m going to start writing these brief comments once a month, mainly for selfish reasons. It helps me reflect on stuff I’ve liked over the previous month and even point out trends I’ve noticed. It will also help me keep on top of writing regularly since that can fall by the wayside without conscious effort.
So, what have I observed, looking through our January posts? Many contributors detest punctuation and proper use of caps. I mean, wawu. Sentences run on endlessly and commas replace full stops like you’re offering us your everlasting stream of thoughts. Then, there are the folks who send in articles where they describe themselves as “i” or start sentences with small letters. It might seem harsh, but we reject such submissions immediately. If you’re submitting something you haven’t proofread, that means we will have to spend time going through every sentence correcting minor errors, which takes time away from others who made the effort to spell properly. A few typos are entirely understandable, but once your whole piece is littered with mistakes, I tell my team to cast and bind the spirit of headache and move on.
Another thing I observed is that many of us like to write about love! Ah ah, kilode?! The love you want to find, the love that has expired, the love you see around – not everyday bae problems. As young people, we are confronted with a staggering number of issues; we can’t only choose to write about romance. Even then, let’s try to adopt a different angle. For instance, I really enjoyed this piece, which took more of a conversational approach to addressing someone worried about finding love, as opposed to a classic rant about the fear of never finding a great guy.
Don’t get me wrong – we still end up selecting standard ‘lovey-dovey’ posts. However, because we get so many, there is a much lower chance your submission will be selected if you write about love, for two main reasons. One: someone is very likely to have written about the exact same topic as you recently. Two: there is more pressure on your post to stand out.
All editing is subjective so feel free to take all of this with a pinch of salt. However, I personally find myself gravitating towards posts that address a relatable experience or something that is common knowledge, sometimes with a dash of humour. Just check out these posts about the hilarious horrors of weed, remembering often forgotten workers and the veracity of Okafor’s law. All of them are based on things many others can relate to, and are therefore likely to encourage people to chime in with their own views and/or experiences.
Above all, I LOVE posts that are just out there and totally different from anything else I read on the site. This one made me smile and stood out for being just the right amount of kooky without being completely random. The other two articles in my top three covered the issues of sex and religion, which tend to get you guys talking, but that wasn’t what really won me over about them. I loved the boldness and matter-of-factness with which both writers expressed their opinions because that is precisely the point of opinion pieces. Once you read a piece and feel like you get a strong sense of the person – how they think, what they like and certainly what they don’t like – you’re on to something.
This, however, brings me to my final point – which is the main thing that stood out to me this past month. Being opinionated and being a writer tend to be a package deal but I need people not to take things personally. On several occasions, disagreeing with an article and/or feeling slighted by our decision to reject a submission has led to a few rants in the comments section and even in my emails. You’re not going to agree with everyone on this site (you should see how members of our editing team sometimes debate submissions) and I am not going to select every post my team members send to me. It is what it is. If these simple facts cause you to develop hypertension, you’re not going to live a very healthy life.
Anyway, that’s it from me! Before I go, I’m going to shout out my January faves one more time, just because I can.
Anatomy of a Blunt by Akindamola Akintola
Who’s Your Daddy? by S
My Bible Says… Shut the F*ck Up by Teminiran
Please note this is in no particular order and does not constitute shade to any other posts! Remember what I said about not taking things personally? Thanks for understanding. Also, I’ve decided not to cover fiction submissions in this review because I don’t want both categories muddled together. We’ll figure out something for fiction later on.
I’ll try to keep this up every month but don’t quote me on that. In the meantime, I’m really looking forward to February and all your yummy, original, bold, proofread, opinionated submissions! 😉