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New Writer 2021: Samantha Dooey-Miles


Samantha’s fiction focuses on first-person, female voices. Her work explores the significance seemingly small moments can hold, how characters react in times of high emotion, shame, and embarrassment.

Her stories have been published in Gutter, Severine, Postbox, Razur Cuts, and Clover & White. She has had monologues performed by Slackline Productions and Coronavirus Theatre Club. Two of her short plays have been staged at Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch.

You can find her on Twitter(this will open in a new window) and Instagram(this will open in a new window).

Writing sample

(please note that this creative work is intended for adults and contains adult content)

Let me set the scene, I’m sure you’ve been in your share of this city’s nightclub toilets. I don’t want you to get confused where we are. This one, is off the side to the dance floor in The Attic in The Garage. I mean, it used to be. I’m not nineteen anymore, so I don’t go into The Garage to know what the current layout is. Anyway, black walls, always puddles of clear liquid on the floor regardless of how early on in the night you were in there. That’s where me and my friend from work were. I’ll call her, Miranda, because that’s not her name. There were only two cubicles in this bit and we always shared. The music was muffled and you could hear everything anyone said. It was magic.

I’d peed first and was standing, adjusting the sagging crotch of my Topshop tights as Miranda went. She was drunker than me, her face didn’t say ‘hey come tell me your secrets’ it said ‘keep your distance I may spew’. She looked up at me, her eyes so heavy I thought she might shut them and nap on the industrial looking chrome toilet, when she said, ‘You know Craig?’

Unfortunately for us both, I did. He was her on-again, off-again boyfriend. Another good thing about nightclub toilet me is how positive I am, so I didn’t groan at the mention of his name, only said, ‘Yes.’

‘He got me pregnant.’

I tried to calculate how much she’d drank, wine in the flat, five vodkas in the pub, a few shots in the club. Shit, shit, shit. ‘He did? Well let’s not drink anymore, eh?’

Samantha says:

'I am thrilled to have been selected to receive the award and have the opportunities it brings made available to me. One of the hardest things about trying to find an audience for my writing has been the feeling that routes to progress are difficult to find or make your way throughwith this award it feels as if I’ve been given the map.'