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The creation and current usage of Standard Mandarin

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Hi! I'm a Spanish student interested in learning Chinese, and since learning Standard Mandarin  is more useful and comprehensive way of inmersing in Chinese culture and languge, I would like to know more about the creation, history and actual use in China of the Standard Mandarin.  Anything, extensive or summarized , that you could teach me, depending on your knowledge, time or motivation to answer, is welcome.

Thank you very much!

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I'm Chinese (but not from mainland China) and know a little bit about this from a teacher of mine (who is a mainlander), so I'll try to answer the best I can.

Standard Mandarin is mostly based on the Beijing dialect, but is used as a lingua franca between people who speak different regional dialects (for example, Cantonese in Guangdong, Hokkien in Fujian, etc.). It is almost definitely used in official settings, and can be used in informal settings, although many people do feel more comfortable using their dialect. It is written using the simplified Chinese characters (简笔字), rather than the traditional characters  (繁体字) used for many dialects.

That's all I can offer about this - I wish you luck in your learning!

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