About The Big Thing
• Hardcover: 256 pages
• Publisher: Harper (August 9, 2016)
A New York Times business journalist explains why it’s important for people to pursue big creative projects, and identifies both the obstacles and the productive habits that emerge on the path to completion—including her own experience writing this book.
Whether it’s the Great American Novel or a groundbreaking new app, many people want to create a Big Thing, but finding the motivation to get started, let alone complete the work, can be daunting. In The Big Thing, New York Times business writer and editor Phyllis Korkki combines real-life stories, science, and insights from her own experience to illuminate the factors that drive people to complete big creative projects—and the obstacles that threaten to derail success.
In the course of creating her own Big Thing—this book—Korkki explores the individual and collaborative projects of others: from memoirs, art installations, and musical works to theater productions, small businesses, and charities. She identifies the main aspects of a Big Thing, including meaningful goals, focus and effort, the difficulties posed by the demands of everyday life, and the high risk of failure and disappointment. Korkki also breaks down components of the creative process and the characteristics that define it, and offers her thoughts on avoiding procrastination, staying motivated, scheduling a routine, and overcoming self-doubt and the restrictions of a day job. Filled with inspiring stories, practical advice, and a refreshing dose of honesty, The Big Thing doesn’t minimize the negative side of such pursuits—including the fact that big projects are hard to complete and raise difficult questions about one’s self-worth.
Inspiring, wise, humorous, and good-natured, The Big Thing is a meditation on the importance of self-expression and purpose.
This is the kind of book I enjoy reading from time to time. I marked it up quite a bit so I can go back later and refresh my memory on the gems I found. I'm so conditioned in my life to multitask so one of the first things that jumped out at me was her recommendation to place more value on unitasking: working steadily toward the creation of one thing. Later, she talks about how breathing properly and sleeping can help you move closer to your Big Thing. She also talks about collaborating with others which helps with accountability, and deadlines. She did a lot of research and interviewing experts and I found all of that interesting.
In this book, the author focuses on how she achieved her Big Thing, which was writing this book. She also shares stories from the lives of others to illustrate some of her points. I generally love reading those types of examples, but there were times I found myself skimming through them. I was intrigued by this book and found plenty of great ideas and gems to take away as I work on my own Big Thing. If you're feeling stuck on your Big Thing, this is a book you will definitely want to read to get you motivated again!
My Rating=4 Stars
Source: Received a copy via TLC Book Tours for an honest review
About Phyllis Korkki
Phyllis Korkki is an assignment editor and reporter for the New York Times Sunday Business section.
Follow Phyllis on Twitter.
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