Column: Hollywood awards season is upon us. Pity the introverts

You’d think that people who vote for film, television and music awards would know when the nominees are released and would already be thinking about them when this time of year rolls around. But not.

Before awards season is campaign season, the air is filled with the phrase «for consideration.» It appears where «ho, ho, ho» and holiday cheer used to be.

Stipple style portrait illustration of LZ Granderson

Opinion columnist

LZ Granderson

LZ Granderson writes about culture, politics, sports and navigating life in America.

Campaign season is life’s palate cleanser—a reminder that while much of the entertainment industry’s facade isn’t real, the competition is. And while everyone loves to work together, the reality is that campaign season is a lot like a condensed season of «Survivor.»

For major awards – depending on the category – the promotional publicity circuit is physically demanding, especially for creatives who are also working on new projects at the same time. And that nagging question keeps buzzing around your ear like a gnat: Does any of this matter in a contest where some voters can reject the merits of a work of art just because it was created by someone they don’t like?

Or who didn’t play the game.

Or wait for their turn.

It’s not just the entertainment industry that runs this circus. Journalists also have awards season. Whatever the field, these contests are all about highlighting your work and launching a charm offensive. This is natural for some people, but for applicants who fall into it 39% of Americans who identify as introvertsnot so much.

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Even alone, in the quiet of my own office, the process of submitting my work for consideration for a price is uncomfortable. I can’t imagine how intense it must be for introverts whose work is seen as their industry’s highest honor on a much, much bigger stage. And those whose publicists prepare endless brunches with potentially influential people.

For years, I assumed that everyone in front of the cameras was having the time of their lives this time of year. And many are. However, I have come to understand that creative introverts dread the campaign season. They are allergic to self-promotion. Not to mention the world is designed to reward extroverts. At school, they get attention from teachers. At work, he speaks in Zoom meetings. Introverts prefer not to. But you can’t reap the harvest in award season unless you plant the seeds through self-promotion.

And with the Golden Globes this weekend, the work to promote the piece is really just getting started for Barbenheimer and the gang. Of course, being rich and/or famous with a nice set of abs helps – whether one is an introvert or not. However, access to the comforts of life does not always mean that you will be able to live comfortably.

It’s a compromise. And if you look behind all the tinsel, you’ll see that we all have some version of the campaign.

In your world, this might happen at the annual company golf outing or holiday party, when ambitious people work with bosses for promotions. A Hollywood moment comes with the red carpet and couture, but the industry’s creatives are a lot like the rest of us: lobbying for our hard work to be recognized.

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To be seen.

For consideration.

And after a year in which hundreds of thousands of workers stopped working across the country, including writers and actors, it must be especially strange for many in Hollywood, who are now shifting from fighting for one form of consideration from the industry to campaigning for this one. Even more so for introverts who didn’t want to leave their cocoon to do the same.

For extroverts, it may be like an extended holiday season full of fun and surprises.

We introverts prepare for less than fun, but we know that sometimes the competition matters because we believe our work matters.


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