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Writing and me

Image of Dale Smith as a young boy

Why did you do it?

I've been writing for literally longer than I can remember. I haven't kept any examples of my work prior to 1994, but since then I have an almost complete record. The short story I wrote on a writing course at the Leicester Haymarket? The plays and monologues that were part of my Drama Degree at Manchester University? Yes, you can read those here if you really want to see my early progression.

Back when I was writing those things, I used to think that there was some secret to getting work produced or published that no-one had told me. I used to think that there must be some trick I was missing, some arcane tactic that would suddenly grant me a writing career. As I write this, I've got twenty years of writing behind me that you can see below. It took me that long to realise that I have - albeit small and unimposing - a writing career. That the way I got it was probably the same way everybody else got theirs: by persistence, by luck, and with the sneaking suspicion that everybody else was doing it better than me.

Which was why I decided to create this site.

I decided that I would document the process I went through to get where I am today, on the bottom rung of a career in writing. I wanted to answer the questions that I had when I first started out. I wanted to hopefully give the answers that would have made me realise the truth a lot earlier: there is no magic secret to becoming a writer. All you can do is write, and keep sending it out. Don't wait to be asked: no-one will ever give you permission. Just get out there and do it.

So I made this website - using some of the things I'd picked up during my day job at CTI Digital (if you are going to be a writer, you will need another source of income: in twenty years, I've earned £12,000 from writing. If I was a full time writer, I'd be earning 31p an hour.)

If you'd like to contact me to discuss any of this, you can find me on Twitter at @MrDaleSmith, or else you can use the contact form here.