Biography

Author Picture

Norman Samuda Smith

My parents migrated to England from Jamaica in the early 1950's, I was born in 1958 and spent most of my formative years living and growing up above my mother's hair boutique business in the Small Heath area of Birmingham. When I realised my love of writing at the age of ten, I was encouraged and inspired by my mom to read and continue writing. I soon began entertaining my friends with fictional stories, they were the main characters in the stories I wrote about a Birmingham based black football/soccer club; the Caribbean Stars.

My novel Bad Friday was first published in 1982 by Trinity Arts Association based in Small Heath; it was short-listed for the Young Observer Fiction Prize that year. New Beacon books; London/Port of Spain republished the novel in 1985. In their promotion of my novel, New Beacon announced: "Bad Friday is the first novel to come out of the black British working class experience; and it confronts in an artistic form, the life of black youth in Britain today," which confirmed me as the first black British born novelist to be published in the United Kingdom.

My short-stories and poems have been featured in award winning anthologies: Whispers in the Walls; Songs of Hope and The Heart of Our Community.

In 2013, after being frustrated with years of main stream publisher's rejections, I self-published three of my books under the banner of Samuda Smith Publications; Britannia's Children; Freedom Street and in celebration of its 3oth anniversary, Bad Friday.

I am currently the Writer, Editor and Publisher of the on-line cultural review Panther Newsletter and its mother site Samuda Smith Publications.