All great info above, and welcome to AA!
Most of us actually prefer to start out with dry sand, actually, so I agree it's perfectly safe to start there. Over time, the dry dead sand will become live on it's own and give you the benefits of a live sand bed.
Since you're just starting out in the SW
hobby, take some time to read and do some research - there's some links in my signature that may help you. Researching ahead of time will save you tremendous amounts of headaches later!