Welcome to the voxgig newsletter for tech speakers, 11 May 2018

Welcome to the voxgig newsletter for tech speakers, 11 May 2018

There’s a psychological phenomenon (that’s a word not to be used lightly when speaking in public—avoid words that are hard to pronounce!) called “being in the zone”. Athletes often speak about it in reverential tones. It means being so fully focused on your present activity that time and space melt away, and you perform at your best. 
This is not some kooky pop theory; it’s a mental state theory (it’s also known as a “flow” state) first described by Mihály Csíkszentmihályi in 1975 [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_(psychology)].
Some even say that being in the “flow” state is the true definition of happiness—or at least, the only true way to satisfy the madness of creativity. 
Whatever it is, getting “into the zone” when you speak is how you get to a place of passion. Getting to this place is a little like trying to bottle lightning. It has only happened to me a few times. In all those cases, I was really into the subject matter of the talk, and was really feeling the vibe from the audience. I also knew the material very well and had given the same talk multiple times. Interestingly, I was not necessarily well-rested, or even emotionally calm.
These are just my subjective experiences. I don’t know how to get you to your flow state. But perhaps just knowing that it exists is enough. When flow happens, and you recognize and run with it, it’s quite magical.
(On the subject of passion, I’d like to thank everybody in voxgig who helps produce this newsletter. It’s become one of our most passionate projects, and I’m really proud that we can produce something cool and useful every week. I hope you enjoy reading our newsletter as much as we enjoy writing it!)

Speaker Training

Do you speak at conferences? Want to learn how to give the very best talks? Or are you just starting out and want to overcome the fear of speaking on stage?

We are running speaker training workshops in Dublin and London, in Ireland and the U.K. over the coming months.

There is a 10% OFF early bird discount if you book before May 22nd.

To find out more follow the links below.

Public speaking with Lauren Currie

London, UK - Friday June 22, 2018 | More Details

Giving great talks with Russ Miles

Dublin, Ireland - Tuesday July 17, 2018 | More Details

Public speaking with Debbie Forster

London, UK - Thursday October 18, 2018 | More Details

Giving great talks with Russ Miles

London, UK - Thursday November 8, 2018 | More Details

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Speaker Profile


‘A thought experiment on the intelligence of crows’ 
Joshua Klein

If your subject is one that may not appeal to the masses, you need to find a way to make it work. The way to do that is to speak with passion. Joshua Klein is obviously passionate about crows and has a great respect for their capabilities. His passion for his subject is infectious and gives us all a new perspective and respect for crows.


Learn from the Best


‘Forget what you know’
Jacob Barnett

This is an amazing talk from a teen with enormous passion for his subject.
We love to look at alternative and inclusive sources for our ‘learn from the best’ section of this newsletter. We can lose some of our enthusiasm as we mature, so it’s very fitting that we use an example from a teen. Jacob is full of passion and excitement. When you live your passions and speak about them, your enthusiasm is transferred to your audience. You take your audience on a journey that motivates and inspires them to action.


Tell me...

 What is your biggest challenge as a tech speaker?

This newsletter is for you. I want it to include hints, tips and strategies that resonate with you.

So go ahead, hit reply and tell me what you find challenging as a speaker. 

Email me at richard@voxgig.com. You can tweet too: @voxgig I will address the most pressing issues in each edition.


Book of the Week


From the SOAPBOX to the STAGE

Bill Corbett

Whether you need to engage in public speaking for your work or you would like to get paid for public speaking, there is one thing that is compulsory: you need to be passionate about your topic. This book is great for helping you choose topics that fill you with passion. If you are engaged in your topic, your audience will follow.


Blog Post

‘Inject passion into your speeches’ by Eamonn O’Brien



There are many ingredients required to create and deliver a great speech. But as we have said above, there needs to be passion in what you say if you want people to take action. Making sound arguments and establishing trust with your audience are also essential but you need to do more to motivate an audience to actual action.

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Three Conferences


HolyJS 2018 Piter

In its fifth year, HolyJS 2018 Piter is the only JavaScript conference in Russia dedicated entirely to JavaScript. More than 500 developers come together in Russia’s cultural center to discuss the present and future of the JavaScript community. From functional programming in JS to Node.js best practices, the list of topics is very focused.


Women Empower Expo

The Women Empower Expo (WEX) Washington D.C. is part of an experiential one-day event series in North America and is designed to empower, educate and equip women with the knowledge and community to be successful. The program includes workshops, panels, breakout sessions, a pitch competition, networking lounge, woman-owned marketplace, author book signing, mindset stage and much more. Lots of opportunities for networking, showing support, and enjoying a day with like-minded peers.


Pittsburgh Tech Fest

Join software development professionals for a one-day event to talk and learn about perfecting their craft. Topics will cover coding, tools, agile, and project management, in all development disciplines and all development stacks. There’s plenty to do in Pittsburgh once the conference is over, so be sure to hit the town with some of your fellow developers.

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CFP Calendar

These are the CFP deadline dates and submission pages.


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A favour...

Can I ask you for a favour? If you enjoy this newsletter, and if you find it useful, please consider recommending it to a friend who is learning to give technical talks, or who aspires to do so. I meet so many cool programmers who have brilliant things to share with the world—that’s you!

Please help me to improve this newsletter - I'd love to hear your suggestions! You can email me directly at richard@voxgig.com. You can tweet too: @voxgig. Thank you so much for reading!

A special thanks and shout out to TammyCora, and David for helping to make this newsletter even better!



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