Trust30 prompts: Speak Less by Laura Kimball

What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think. This rule, equally arduous in actual and in intellectual life, may serve for the whole distinction between greatness and meanness. It is the harder, because you will always find those who think they know what is your duty better than you know I. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

I once received a fortune cookie that read: “Speak less of your plans, you’ll get more done.” What’s one project that you’ve been sitting on and thinking about but haven’t made progress on? What’s stopping you? What would happen if you actually went for it and did it?


It so happens that there’s this stalled project I have at the moment – a book proposal for a tie-in to a well-regarded tv show. (I’m going to be a little cagey about this for now, so I won’t be specifying what the show is. Let’s just say that it would work unusually well as a talking book, and leave it at that.)

What’s stopping me is basically just fear – this is a completely unsolicited proposal, and although I think it’s a pretty strong idea, I worry that I’ll only get one chance to make a first impression, and I want to get it right. So right.

That said, the proposal’s not that far off completed. I need to polish the sample chapter a little, but only a little. I could probably have it ready to go out in just a day or two, in fact.

And what would happen then? We’ll I’d submit it, and there’d be a long period of suspense while I waited to see what happened next. If it worked, I’d have a well-paid and high profile book to write, which would hopefully lead to more such work in the future. If it didn’t, well, I guess at least I’d have the satisfaction of knowing I’d given it my best shot.

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