If the green shoes fit...
What? They do. Size 9 if you must know. I am not so inured to the world that I don't feel envy.
When that form-letter rejection shows up in my box while a friend is hooting in delight about the three-book deal he just signed?
When every other tweet in the stream is someone promoting a book I actually read didn't remotely enjoy?
When a CP is wrapping up their fifth book and I'm still grappling with the same damn story?
When I go to a Con and the authors are swept off to the publisher parties while I sit through another lecture on how to balance world-building against plot progression and character development?
Book cover reveals? Local signings? Lecture circuits? Industry panels? Requests to write a book? Movie adaptation? Action figures? Translations in 20+ languages? Every frippin' story about the .00001% who made it big?
Yes, yes, I do know the exact shade of green my eyes turn. Why? Because I allow myself to feel envy. Because -- as Jeffe and James have both said -- a taste of sin is a great motivator.
Also, repressing emotions is unhealthy.
However. I don't cling to the emotion. I don't stuff it in my bra and hope it makes me look more appealing. I feel the burn of a hostile emotion. I recognize it as envy. I shake it's hand.
I let it go.
I cringe when authors -- aspiring or published -- flaunt their envy. I bet most of them don't realize which sin is at the root of their disproportionate spite. They are too busy tearing down those around them that they can't hear the internal voice saying, "It's us, dummy. The problem is self-contained. Other people didn't do anything to us."
"You are being a fucktard."
Envy transforms somewhat well-adjusted adults into snarky teenagers picking apart the popular kids. Dirty looks, snide asides, not-so-quiet whispers -- all the classic passive-aggressive behaviors. Envy isn't as flamboyant as Wrath or as pretentious as Pride. Envy is insidious. It is the sin that starts rumors. Rumors in the era of constant connectivity are very easy to spread and even easier to get back to the targets of the envy. Rumors in the tight community of publishing will come back and bite the creator in the ass.
Whenever I'm bitch-slapped by the green-eyed monster, I remind myself: What are the people who have what I want thinking? They aren't thinking about me. They're thinking how they are going to achieve their next goal. Maybe I should stop eyeballing other people's success and focus on obtaining my own. Maybe I should stop sulking, get off my ass, and exceed my own expectations.
What about you, dear readers? Do you have a trick to snap yourself out of a spiteful mood? How do you turn away from the Sin of Envy?