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Your questions hints at market timing, however, if you've never invested in stocks before, this is understandable. Long term horizon, no better place than stocks. A personal example, my brother kept wondering about saving for his son's college but the "market" was too high and volitale. So he decided to wait. That was back in '87.

You might try breaking up your sum into 4 parts and each quarter and that into the market. Might ease the pain and anxiety of getting in the market.

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