Some Thoughts on TEDx Wroclaw

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I’ve been a fan of TED for years now, so I was extremely honored when I was invited to speak at TEDx Wrocław last Friday. Not only were the presentations charming and engaging, but the sense of community among those present throughout the day and into the late night made this one of my most favorite days in recent memory.

I was the first speaker for the day. My presentation was called The Problem with Cats in Boxes. In less than 18 minutes, I wanted to communicate that some of the ideas present in metafiction isn’t something meant only for writers and readers, but something that can be applied into our everyday lives. I also wanted to inspire people to start sharing their stories more, rather than talking at one another on Facebook and Twitter. My goal was to make the presentation surprising and inspirational, much like all of the TED talks I’ve connected with over the years. While I’m uncertain I accomplished this, the response to my talk has been enormously gratifying.

I want to take the opportunity to thank all of the amazing people who organized TEDx Wrocław, including the main organizer Michał Kasprzyk (whose dream was to organize this event, and I’m confident he can sleep well knowing he not only did it, but did it wonderfully) and Michał Krasoń (who was an enormous help throughout the experience). I would especially like to thank the people who attended – from all over the country – who were kind enough to share their stories with me during and after the event. Their enthusiasm was one of the highlights of the day. And I would like to thank the other speakers, including Jim Williams and Professor Arkadiusz Wójs, who not only were engaging onstage, but supportive offstage.

My only complaint is that many of the speakers arrived right before they went on and left immediately after. This didn’t allow any room for any discussion, which is one of the most important aspects of this kind of event. I hope that this won’t be the case in future TEDx events – here in Wrocław and throughout Poland.

I’m told that the videos for the presentations – including mine – will be made available online in a few weeks. Once they’re online, as well as the photos, I’ll link or post them. In the meantime, here is the website for TEDx Wrocław and their Facebook page. And here is a nice review of the event, including a look at my presentation from a different point of view.

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