All of Ethel Smyth's writings are richly autobiographical. They provide an acute and open account of her experience as a woman entering a strictly delimited male field (in her case that of composing large-scale musical works). Her friend Vita Sackville-West somewhat waspishly suggested that Ethel Smyth "might concisely have entitled her successive books ME ONE, ME TWO, ME THREE, and so on." As a passionate suffragist, Ethel Smyth wrote to show "how these wretched sex-considerations were really the fashioning factor of my life." In particular, her work supports women in music, expresses her own frustrations with exclusion from English musical life, and analyses "the complex of public interest, middlemen, and other conditions that I call the Machine."