Tuesday 15th April 2014 marked a major change in my life. It may seem like a small thing to most people, but I (successfully) partook in a night of technical talks, Manchester Tech Nights. MTN is a regular night held in the heart of Manchester featuring talks from people of all sectors within the technological community. If you’re based in Manchester, I highly recommend checking it out! (www.manchestertechnights.org)
My talk, titled Tutorials For The Masses: Teaching Your Players How To Play, was based on the findings of my dissertation, and whilst the hour or so beforehand I was feeling as nervous as hell, once I got up there and started talking about a topic that I am so passionate about, I forgot all about my nerves.
Mostly, I have all the speakers and organisers of #IGCCGD to thank for this. Whilst at that conference, amongst all the inspirational talks, I thought to myself “I could totally do this, couldn’t I?” I knew that MTN was coming up and the organisers were looking for speakers. That weekend, I emailed the organisers of MTN, and the rest is history.
Now that I’ve completed my first public talk on this subject, I feel more confident in my ability to talk in public, and generally more confident in myself. I now feel like I have the confidence and knowledge to propose a talk at various unconferences I’ll be heading to over the next weeks. If anyone’s on the fence about partaking in a talk at events (and speaking as a generally shy person), my advice would be: go for it!