Talks

I speak fairly frequently about interactive fiction and text-based games, what makes for good interactive story, narrative design, character AI, toolsets for writing games, and specific past projects.

In addition to the public and academic talks listed here, I also sometimes give bespoke presentations to game studios and other organisations about narrative design and tech. Please feel free to get in touch if you’d like to discuss my speaking to your organisation.

Upcoming:

Presentation at the VOLUPTAS summer school, June 21, 2021.

AI Summit advising for GDC 2021.

Ongoing:

MC of the Oxford-London Interactive Fiction Meetup, organizing/presenting as needed.

Past:

WGGB panel on Writing with and for Procedural Generation, April 2021

Ludonarracon panel on Telling Dark Stories in Games, April 2021

AI-Supported Game Narratives, invited talk, Northeastern University, April 2021

Talk on storylet-based approach to the design of Animal Farm, Oxford-London IF Meetup, January 2021

Talk and workshop on storylet-based narrative design, Oxford-London IF Meetup, January 2020

Project Horseshoe, Texas, November 2019 (participation, not a prepared talk)

Dagstuhl Seminar, Artificial and Computational Intelligence in Games, December 2019 (participation, not a prepared talk)

Panel on the future of games technology at the European Women in Games conference, September 2019

Invited presentation on Spirit AI’s work at Queen Mary University of London, September 2019

Workshop on Games and Natural Language Processing, FDG, San Luis Obispo (may be remotely presented), August 2019

Keynote, IEEE-CoG, London, August 2019

Workshop on natural language understanding Character Engine projects, London IF Meetup, June 2019

CogX Festival of AI and Emerging Technology, London, June 2019

NarraScope, panel on Bandersnatch, Boston, June 2019

State of Play, Dublin, May 2019. “Mysterious and Alluring Problems in Narrative Design”

Jerusalem Games Conference, Jerusalem, May 2019. “Elements of Interactive Storytelling”

GameFest keynote, Albany, April 2019. Talk on game narrative patterns in multiple media

Off the Page, talk on games based on classical sources, British Library, April 2019

London Games Festival, panel at Interactive Narratives Summit, April 2019

Invited seminar talk on Character Engine and related projects, Queen Mary University of London, March 2019

GDC 2019, Turing Tantrums, March 2019

GDC 2019, Ethics in AI panel, March 2019

GDC 2019 AI Summit advisor, March 2019

Chairing Keynote at Beyond the Console talk, V&A Museum, February 2019

Conversation as Gameplay talk, London IF Meetup, January 2019

PocketGamer Connects panel on the future of PC games, January 2019

Digital Cultures 2018, Warsaw, September 2018

ICCC 2018, panel on industry uses of computational creativity in games, Salamanca, June 2018

AI Summer School, overview of interactive narrative subjects and projects, May 2018

GDC 2018, procedural generation panel at AI Summit, March 2018

GDC 2018, Simplest Trick in the Book panel at AI Summit, March 2018

GDC 2018, AI Devs Rant at AI Summit, March 2018

Invited talk at the Knowledge Extraction from Games workshop at AAAI, February 2018

Keynote at Malta Global Game Jam, January 2018

Talk on Matching Story and Mechanics, Oxford/London IF Meetup, January 2018

Introductory talk on AI-assisted game design, Dagstuhl, November 2017

MICA, Buenos Aires, October 2017. Reprise of “The Uncanny Mirror: Seeing ourselves in AI”

Progression Mechanics, September 2017. Talk on agency and narrative

Gamelab, Barcelona, June 2017. “The Uncanny Mirror: Seeing ourselves in AI”

Strange Tales, presentation on interactive fiction, London, June 2017

Creative Coast Festival, Sweden, May 2017

Passaporta Literary Festival, Brussels, interview on literary games. March 2017

GDC 2017, Narrative Innovation Showcase panel section, February 2017

AdventureX, “The Past Futures of Interactive Fiction,” London, November 2016

Wordplay, Inform 7 workshop, London, November 2016

Wordplay, panel on interactive fiction tool development, London, November 2016

SUBOTRON arcademy, talk on writing sex and intimacy in games, Vienna, October 2016

PROCJAM, talk on principles of generating text, Falmouth, October 2016

Presentation on procedural narrative and related topics at the Oxford Artificial Intelligence Meetup, October 2016

Workshop on writing interactive fiction with Texture, Canterbury, September 2016

Intelligent Games and Game Intelligence, London, September 2016

Feral Vector, talk on narrative structures beyond branching, June 2016

Interactive fiction writing workshop, TORCH, Oxford, May 2016

EGX Rezzed, panel session on the present and future of narrative in games. April 2016

Invited talk, USC Cinematic Arts Interactive Media & Games Division, March 2016

GDC 2016, Rules of the Game panel session, talked about visualizing system content. March 2016

SXSW 2016, “Hacking Language” panel on IF, bots, and esolangs. March 2016

TORCH Book at Lunchtime presentation on Iain Pears’ Arcadia, Oxford, March 2016

Class presentation, University for the Creative Arts, Farnham, January 2015

Invited talk, University for the Creative Arts, Farnham, November 2015

Invited talk, Northeastern University, November 2015.

Invited talk, Harvard, November 2015. Presentation on interactivity for theater students

Wordplay Festival, Toronto, November 2015. Presentation on the power of interaction in storytelling

Wordplay Festival, Toronto, November 2015. Workshop on writing interactive fiction

Invited talk, CMU, November 2015. Presentation on interactive narrative

Science Museum, London, October 2015 workshop on interactive fiction as part of Ada Lovelace bicentennial

London Southbank University, October 2015, workshop on mechanics and story

Southbank Centre, October 2015, panel on games writing (“Exit, Pursued by a Zombie”)

Now Play This, September 2015, Somerset House, 15-minute talk on games and intimacy

Headstart Institute, summer school for indie game developers, workshop on interactive narrative

ICCC 2015, academic conference on creative computing, keynote

IRCAM 2015, music and technology research center in Paris, seminar on the artistic power of interaction

GDC 2015, GDC microtalks session, talk on the uses of tabletop story gaming

ICIDS 2014, academic conference on interactive storytelling, keynote speaker

Singapore Writers’ Festival 2014, workshop on interactive storytelling

Singapore Writers’ Festival 2014, panel on story in games

AdventureX 2013, presentation on Versu concept and design tools

PRACTICE 2013, game design conference coordinated by NYU, panel on interactive narrative

Invited talk at NYU on Versu design and toolset, 2013

Indiecade 2013, panel on character interiority in games

Indiecade 2013, panel on Twine interactive fiction (moderator)

Oxford Brookes University, 2013, presentation on interactive literature for an audience studying publishing

Inventing the Future of Games 2013,  panel on tools for games writing

GDC 2013, Versu post-mortem in the design track; rated one of the top 50 sessions at the conference

GDC 2013, Indie soapbox session

GDC 2013, Experimental Gameplay Workshop

GDC Austin 2012, presentation on designing for multiple players in the game narrative track

GDC 2012, artificial intelligence track, presentation on Cotillion project

INT workshop at AIIDE 2012, academic conference on narrative technologies, keynote on Cotillion project

Invited talk at UCSC on Cotillion project, 2012

GDC 2011, artificial intelligence track, presentation on Little Text People

Inventing the Future of Games 2011, presentation on modeling listening in games

American Philological Association Meeting, 2011, panel on reception of classics in children’s literature, talk on classical influences interpreted through video games

Invited talk at UCSC on conversation modeling in games, 2011

“Complicity”, 2011, a one-day workshop on creating and editing interactive fiction, co-run with Failbetter Games

GDC 2010, artificial intelligence track, presentation on conversation modeling in games

PAX East 2010, panel on interactive storytelling

MIT Purple Blurb series 2010, interactive reading from my work

Literary festival at the University of Passo Fundo, Brazil, 2009. Five-day workshop on interactive fiction

Literary festival at the University of Passo Fundo, Brazil, 2009. Presentation on the value of interactive literature

Association of Computer Machinery Hypertext conference, 2007, panel on tragedy in interactive literature

University of Pennsylvania, Kelly Writers House, 2004, interactive reading

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