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Simon Van Booy      

Novelist, Playwright, Philosopher

Simon Van Booy surprises audiences on the way to delighting and uplifting them. He motivates young people to appreciate the freedom of youth, and corporate worker bees to value the competitive value of daydreaming. Van Booy, raised in Wales, is the author of "The Secret Lives of People in Love," "Love Begins in Winter" (winner of the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award) and the novel "Everything Beautiful Began After."

He is the editor of three philosophy books: "Why We Fight," "Why We Need Love," and "Why Our Decisions Don’t Matter." Simon’s essays have appeared in the New York Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Guardian, and ELLE Men. He’s written for National Public Radio and the BBC.

His first play, "HINDSIGHT," completed an extended run in New York in 2012. Simon teaches at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, and is involved in the Rutgers Early College Humanities program for young adults living in underserved communities. He also sits on the Advisory Board for PARTNERS, an organization aimed at helping children heal after trauma.

He was a finalist for the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise, and a finalist for the American Bookseller Association Book of the Year 2012.

Simon’s work has been translated into thirteen languages, and his latest novel, "The Illusion of Separateness," was published in 2013.

Speech Topics


Business Success: The Importance of Daydreaming

How can we make business environments more creative? Staying inspired will not only make a person savvy in business but more pleasant to be around, more understanding, and more compassionate. With funny and fascinating historical anecdotes, Simon Van Booy discusses how great business minds of the past have found inspiration. Let your audience learn how many of America’s wealthiest and most celebrated business leaders are inspired by subjects and passions seemingly unconnected to business, but which form the basis of their business models.

Why We Need Love, Why We Fight, & Why Our Decisions Don't Matter (Series)

Simon Van Booy examines the reasons why humans behave in certain ways. Expanding upon extracts from the works of great minds over the past 3000 years, each of Simon’s discussions is funny, informative, and leaves the audience with a sense of hope and enlightenment on the subject, as well as an understanding of how and why the self reacts in ways which may not be in a person’s best interests. As with all Simon Van Booy’s talks, this one will end up inspiring the audience.

The Nature of Self-Perception

How do we see ourselves? How do we develop notions of who we are? Simon Van Booy examines the idea of self through the lenses of anthropology, anatomy, sociology, psychology, and economic theory, blending ideas from leading writers and artists with humor and anecdotes.

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