Writer Interview: David Attree

David Attree

When and why did you first start writing?

I have written poems and rhymes from an early age and have always linked rhythms to words to help me learn things. I love playing with words; I love the silliness and fun you can create by observing everyday life, playing with your imagination and telling silly tales. I also relish using words to create and change the moods of the readers. At various times, I have had people tell me they have laughed, thought differently, or even cried after reading some of my poems, and the fact that can happen just by placing ink on a page in a certain order just makes me tick!

Who is most supportive about your writing?

Absolutely, my wife, Sara. I left my job in November last year so I could focus on writing a children’s picture book and develop other writing projects. Less than a year in, things are beginning to happen, and performance poetry and spoken-word is moving front and centre, but if I could spend every evening writing poetry of all kinds I would happily do so.

Tell me something about your work published in Peeking Cat Anthology 2017.

Dawn Paddler was a title sent to me via my Facebook page “Poem Tennis” where I ask people to ‘serve’ me a word or title and I then ‘Return’ them a poem based on it. The lady who served me the title is a keen sea-swimmer and I know she was expecting romantic, powerful or ethereal about the solitude of early tides. However, when I saw the title, I also saw Dawn very clearly in my mind and had to follow that train of thought. I like writing about people, their mannerisms and behaviours and I like to tell a story too. Dawn let me do this.

Where do you write? Do you have a writing space or a particular process/routine?

I write mainly in a study room at home or at the kitchen table. However, I always carry paper and pen and cycle a lot too. The rhythm set sometimes by pedals forces me to pull over and note down ideas or lines, ready to develop later. I don’t have routines; words come to me in waves sometimes so I have to record a spoken poem as it comes to me. At other times, a title sparks something that I really take time over.

What’s your favourite word? 

So many! Special mention has to be given to these though: Pamphlet. Fluff. Elbow. Melifluous.


What do you find the most difficult or challenging about writing?

Having the time to do it. Having the patience and organisation to plan projects for best results. Also, developing a network of contacts to give me the best chance to get my work seen.

Tell me about the piece of work that you are most proud of writing, or about the writing accomplishment you are most proud of.

I don’t yet have the answer to that question. I am working on something at the moment though, which I believe may well become my favourite thing so far, but it isn’t finished yet. I will be focusing on it soon, so watch this space!

In terms of writing accomplishments, I am most proud of stopping work to follow my dream, but putting a scaffold and a frame that the dream can grow on.

What are your writing plans, goals or dreams for the future?

I have now changed my description on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to “Writer, poet, performer and author”.  I am now all of those things, which is a dream that is coming true. My plan and goal however, is to entertain and engage as many young minds and adult minds as possible. I want to make people see poetry as a wonderfully expressive and enlightening form of writing, which does not need to be exclusive, over-fussy, or showy-offy!

I want to perform on stages, visit schools to run poetry lessons or assemblies, publish a series of books I have in mind and make a living from the thing that I adore doing.


David Attree has always enjoyed rhymes, playing with words and writing poems for friends and family. He runs a page on Facebook called Poem Tennis, and invites people to “Serve” him a word or title, whereupon he “Returns” them a poem. He has started to appear on the spoken-word and open-mic poetry scene and is working on a series of children’s fiction books.

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