Preparing For My First Public Talk

This weekend I was invited to attend the Nystagmus Network Open Day in Birmingham. Although I’ve been to things like Sight Village before, where I got to meet a handful of people with aniridia, I’ve never been to a large, dedicated conference for people with the same eye condition to network and find out information. So that in itself was going to be interesting.

But I wasn’t just a regular attendee – I was going to be one of the speakers! So that meant doing another first – publicly talking about myself and my life. This was naturally a daunting prospect, but exciting too. So I agreed to give it a go, it was worth a try.

And I combined this with yet another first – recording a proper travel vlog, the pilot episode of “Glen Cam”! I didn’t film inside the event, but I recorded myself before and after. I’m currently editing it all together, so you’ll be able to see that on my Youtube channel very soon.

But I wanted to write in detail about my experience as well, which I’m going to split over a couple of posts so it doesn’t get too long. I’m then going to publish a written article version of my speech here, and a video version on my Youtube channel, so you can see what I said, and maybe it will give you some inspiration and reassurance too. So I’ve got quite a bit to share!

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Using RNIB Overdrive

Recently I wrote about audiobooks, including an overview of the RNIB Overdrive service, where you can download books for free from the RNIB’s Talking Book library. It’s a brilliant service with a huge number of titles to choose from, so it’s well worth checking out if you enjoy reading and listening to audiobooks. And in this post, I’m going to illustrate how we use it in my household, so you get a feel for how it works.

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Audiobooks

I’ve been writing a lot about music here, including how important it can be to people, and trawling through my music collection. And I’ve written about audio description as well. But audio is also used for books too. They don’t just have to be printed on paper or displayed on a screen – a huge number of them have audio versions as well. They are particularly useful for visually impaired people of course, but sighted people can (and do) listen to them as well. I don’t personally use them very much – music, TV, films and the internet take up enough of my time where entertainment is concerned – but my mother listens to them a lot, and I do listen to one or two occasionally.

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