I think your 74k followers here makes a big difference compared to the average writer. You can have big hits without curation and name value/experience will help you get published in all the top publications. My one big hit was double curated. All the other articles have earned less than $10.
Your articles will appear organically on people’s home pages which allows the snowball effect to work as the algorithm sees your article adds value. I think this initial spike is really important. Someone can write a great article but if only two people ever see it and it’s not curated, it will go nowhere.
You’ve absolutely deserved your advantage but I think for the rest of us, curation is still a large factor in expanding our audience until we don’t need curation.
Have a great day!