Born in Montreal, ca1921, Dan Daniels began writing at thirteen and became a social activist at seventeen. Daniels also developed a career as a storyteller beginning in 1972.
In 1938 Daniels joined the Communist party and remained an active member until 1955. Under the party Daniels worked as a trade union organizer with warehouse workers, in the textile industry, aircraft industry, glass workers and with seamen. Daniels worked on Canadian merchant ships and was later an organizer for the group. According to his biography in "Paranoia and Dirty Feet", published by White Dwarf Editions in 1995, during his work with the merchant seamen he was, "thrown off one freighter after being accused of mutiny (of which he admits he was technically guilty: he refused to obey an officer's order) and was arrested eleven times during the seamen's strikes of 1946, 1948, and 1949.
Daniels left the Communist Party in 1955, at which point many Canadian members also did, because he felt the Soviet regime was oppressive and no longer serving the working class. When the Canadian Labour Party did not split from Soviet influence, Daniels left the party.
In addition to his trade union work, Daniels was instrumental in numerous other organizations and social movements, including: Fair Play for Cuba Committee in Montreal (which helped to found), resistance efforts against the Vietnam war, the non-Communist peace movement, and the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. He was also one of the leaders of Operation St-Jean-Baptiste, a group devoted to removing the nuclear missiles held in La Macaza, Quebec.
Daniels had stories, essays and articles published in periodicals and journals in Canada, the United States, England, Australia and Mexico. He had plays produced for the stage in Canada and the United States and had works broadcast on radio and television. Daniels created his persona, "Dan the Storyman" to bring storytelling to elementary school classrooms in primary schools for both the Protestant and Catholic schools boards of Montreal. He was a founding member of both the Playwrights' Workshop of Montreal and the Playwrights Circle of Montreal. Daniels wrote three novels; one written at thirteen, which was destroyed by the author, a second novel was confiscated by the Quebec Provincial Police during the Padlock Law days and a third entitled, "Waiting to be Buried". None of the novels were published.
During the 1960s, Daniels worked as an educator in Tanguay women's prison under the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal. He also received a master's degree in Environmental Studies from York University and later taught at College Marie-Victorin.