I wrote about getting started last week, with invitations from others. I think the first time I actually made my own submission was to the Indy Tech Fest in 2007. At the time, Andy Warren and I were in SQL Saturday discussions about how things had gone the year before and we wanted to get some info on other events. John Magnabosco invited us to submit something to their event, so both Andy and I did.
It wasn’t much of a submission, and I think John just accepted what I sent without thinking about it. However, at the same time, SQL Saturday #7 – Orlando was coming up and Andy wanted me to come down. This was their second event, so I also prepared a career based submission based my life and sent that in.
That first talk in Indy was OK, but nothing special. The one in Orlando, however, was very exciting for me. I was nervous, especially as the room filled up. Eventually there was standing room only, with some people sitting down around the sides of the classroom. The session was OK from my perspective, but people really enjoyed it, I had a lot of questions, and some good reviews.
That was in 2008 and it got me a little excited. I gained confidence and I submitted that session to two events in 2009 and got accepted. Then in 2010, I expanded my reach, submitting to more events and getting in 10 talks at 7 events.
Since then, I’ve worked on my abstracts and submissions, getting advice from others and trying different things. I’ve also spent time recording and watching myself, taking feedback, and practicing more to become a better public speaker.
I still get nervous at times, but delivering a good talk and having people give me positive feedback is exciting each time it happens.