Shannon Fitzgerald is a self-made success. Coming to NYC to work for MTV vis-à-vis Los Angeles, from London, by way of Toronto (it’s a mouthful!), Fitzgerald is now the mastermind behind MTV’s series. Her official title: Senior Vice President of Series Development. “It is my job, and that of the team I oversee, to create new shows for the network in both the reality, and scripted genres. A day on the job is meetings, shooting,coming up with new ideas, developing ideas into something “real” that we can actually make, putting out fires, writing, directing, and producing our new shows.” So, we can safely say she wears a lot of hats. Not to mention the fact that she manages to run her own site, on the side, theaccidentalexecutive.com.
She’d never bib her “large collection of violent jewelry (spiky rings, sword necklaces, things made out of safety pins), Marc Jacobs military coat, or vintage Courreges bag,” and finds inspiration in a host of places, citing “tomboys, mods, punks, British youth culture in general” as primary inspirations, as well as “British Vogue and ELLE, iD, The Face (not in print anymore but still look at old issues), Wonderland, Russh, Riki, Bon, Purple, really all the indie fashion mags.”
For an MTV approved culture fix, Shannon recommends the new working woman’s bible, Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In,” Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild,” and Gillian Flynn’s “Gone Girl,” and as for tunes, she’s got Jake Bugg’s record on repeat. “Avene Water Mist, fresh greens/juice, clarisonic, iPhone, Dr. Jart BB cream, and Jo Malone candles,” are included amongst Fitzgerald’s luxurious favorites. Finally, Marc Jacobs’s mod inspired dresses and the perfect cut-off jean shorts are at the top of her spring wishlist.
Her favorite part of her awesome job? “making shows I’m truly proud of whether they get great ratings or not such as ‘Washington Heights’ and getting an Emmy nomination last year for ‘It Gets Better.’I get paid to be creative, and travel the world. I really cherish the access I have to interesting people, places, and experiences.”
Shannon’s mantra for the working woman: “there are no shortcuts to success. You just have to do the work.” She describes her own career path: “I started as a writer in scripted TV and worked my way up and then over to include reality TV. Worked my ass off, paid my dues, learned how to make TV and then it all fell into place.” We’re inspired.