George Clooney, in an interview with Esquire, once said that he and his circle of actor friends share a set of common values about the business, which is essentially to not be an asshole. I love, love that statement because it’s applicable across the spectrum of things everyone does in their personal and business lives.
In his conversation with Esquire, Clooney said it was important to do good and be nice, put in hard work while also being cognizant of luck. He implied that others in show business do not share the same values he does. Clooney indicated others are more openly ambitious and appear to be far from self-aware. In part, he believes some of this had to do with the kind of people those individuals chose to surround themselves with.
In the book industry (and other industries) there are prima donnas, bitches who savor going for the jugular, and self-proclaimed bitches who are merely forthright in their opinions, but don’t eviscerate people who disagree.
I believe I fall into the self-proclaimed bitches category. I hold strong opinions, I’ll debate them, but I’m respectful of other’s differing opinion. Personally, there’s no better entertainment for me than debating with other with all parties knowing it’s not personal.
Prima Donnas and Jugular Bitches (aka “Mean Girls”) exist in all industries. They remind me of clique leaders you knew in high school. They society standards for beauty, dressing fashionably and dating Mr. Popular. I’ve never been part of a popular clique (think Pretty in Pink, Never Been Kissed, etc.).
I view Prima Donnas and Jugular Bitches (some refer to them as “mean girls”) as Karma Waiting To Happen. One doesn’t have to be rude or obnoxious in expressing a personal opinion. As you can tell by this post, I’m opinionated, but I’ve not pointed out names or specific behaviors that would allow people to know who I’m talking about. DON’T ASK. I will not speak names. I’ve got more class than that! Besides, I’m a devout believer in Karma!
So I like to think I take the same path Clooney does. I steer clear of Prima Donnas and Jugular Bitches because like George says, they seem less self-aware. Self-awareness IMHO means one is cognizant of how one interacts with the universe in your small personal scope and the larger one outside of your small existence. Ripple effects can create lasting damage. I ought to know. I’ve managed to do some things that impacted my career and headed me in a direction that led me to where I am now versus where I could have been.
So, do you have a category you fall into? Do you work with a Prima Donna? A Jugular Bitch (aka Mean Girl)? Best of all, have you ever seen Karma in action?? I confess, even I can’t avoid wishing for that sometimes! 😀